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Brain Aneurysm


What you need to know about
A Brain Aneurysm

A brain aneurysm is a weak area in the blood vessel’s wall that occasionally ruptures and results in a subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH). Imagine a balloon’s weak part and how stretched-out and frail it feels. That’s how a brain aneurysm is.

Due to the steady flow of blood, that portion of the blood artery wears out and bulges out nearly like a bubble. It has the potential to reach tiny berry size. There are various kinds:

  • Saccular aneurysms – The most prevalent type of brain aneurysms are saccular aneurysms. They protrude in the form of a dome. They have a little “neck” that connects them to the artery.
  • Fusiform aneurysms – Saccular aneurysms are more frequent than fusiform aneurysms. They do not spread out in the form of a dome. Instead, they cause the blood artery to enlarge in that area.

Although brain aneurysms seem frightening, the majority don’t result in symptoms or other health issues. It’s possible to live a long life without ever realising you have one.

Aneurysms can, however, occasionally enlarge, leak, or rupture. You will require medical attention immediately if you get a hemorrhagic stroke, which is major brain bleeding.

Symptoms of a Brain Aneurysm

Whether or not a brain aneurysm ruptures determines the kind of symptoms you experience.

Symptoms of a ruptured brain aneurysm

If you suddenly experience a severe headache, pass out, or experience any of the following signs of an aneurysm rupture, you should seek emergency medical attention immediately:

  • Intense headache that appears out of nowhere
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Nausea and sickness
  • Drowsiness
  • Balance issues when walking and having normal coordination
  • Stiff neck
  • Dilated pupils
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Double or obscured vision
  • Drooping eyelid
  • Confusion or difficulty with mental awareness
  • Seizure

Although brain aneurysms typically don’t cause symptoms, when they grow larger, they can press against the brain and its nerves.

Symptoms of an unruptured brain aneurysm

If you get a new headache or pain above or behind your eye, consult a doctor right away. Call 999. Additional signs of an unruptured aneurysm include:

  • Dilated pupils
  • Double or blurry vision
  • Drooping eyelid
  • Difficulty speaking
  • You feel weak and numb on one side of your face.

A leaky aneurysm can sometimes cause a sudden and severe headache (sentinel bleeding). This may serve as a precursor to a full rupture.


To determine if you have a brain aneurysm, various scans and tests might be done. They consist of:

  • CT Scan – This test produces images of your brain in a CT scan. On a table that glides inside a CT scanner, you will be lying down. To help visualise blood flow and identify aneurysms in your brain, a technician will inject contrast dye into one of your veins.
  • MRI Scan – Similar to an x-ray, you lie on a table that slides into a scanner for this examination. The MRI produces precise images of your brain and blood arteries using magnetic fields and radio waves. Aneurysms that are 3 to 5 millimetres or larger can be found with MRI and CT scans.
  • Angiogram – An angiogram is a test that reveals the weak regions in your blood arteries and is thought to be the most accurate approach to finding aneurysms. You will be given a painkiller before the test and will lie on an X-ray table. A short flexible tube will be inserted by your doctor via a leg blood vessel. They will insert that catheter-style tube into the blood arteries in your neck that provide blood to your brain. Following the injection of a contrast dye into your body, X-rays will be taken to reveal all of the brain’s blood arteries. This provides a map of your blood vessels to your doctor, allowing them to locate the aneurysm.
  • Cerebrospinal fluid test – A test of the cerebrospinal fluid may be prescribed by your doctor if they believe an aneurysm may have ruptured. Something will be administered to you to block any pain. To take spinal fluid, a technician will insert a needle into you. A test is performed on that fluid to determine whether it contains blood, which could indicate an aneurysm rupture.


You will require immediate medical attention if your brain aneurysm bursts or leaks, leading to a hemorrhagic stroke. Although uncommon, this could endanger your life.

Usually, your doctor won’t be able to determine why your brain aneurysm burst. However, professionals are aware of a few factors that could increase your chance of bleeding:

  • High blood pressure – This is the cause of ruptured brain aneurysms most frequently.
  • Strained or heavy lifting – By lifting or straining, you run the risk of your brain aneurysm rupturing.
  • Strong emotions – You run the risk of developing an aneurysm if you are extremely irritated or angry.
  • Medications – Blood thinners, such as amphetamines and ephedrine used in diet pills, as well as other prescription medications, can cause an aneurysm to bleed.
  • Illegal drugs – Cocaine and other dangerous drugs can cause your aneurysm to burst.


Life-threatening consequences of a ruptured brain aneurysm include:

  • Cerebral vasospasm (reduced blood flow to the brain)
  • Hydrocephalus (too much spinal fluid in the brain)
  • A coma
  • Permanent brain damage
  • Continuing bleeding
  • Hyponatremia (low sodium in your blood)


Treatment for ruptured brain aneurysm

f you have a ruptured brain aneurysm, you need to get treated right away because it will probably bleed again. In order to treat an aneurysm, the blood flow must be stopped.

The processes involve dangers. Based on your health, the aneurysm’s size, nature, and location, as well as other factors, your doctor will decide which treatment is most effective.

Surgical clipping – To find the aneurysm, a piece of your skull is removed. The blood flow is stopped by attaching a metal clip to the aneurysm’s orifice. Then your skull is sealed.

Endovascular coiling – This avoids opening the skull during surgery. To get to the blood vessel with the aneurysm, your doctor will place a catheter into your groyne. The physician will insert microscopic platinum coils inside the aneurysm through the tube. The coils fit into the aneurysm’s shape and block the blood flow there. The aneurysm may bleed again after this, albeit it may be less dangerous than surgical clipping.

Flow diverter surgery – This procedure is a possibility for bigger brain aneurysms where coiling or clipping would not be effective. During this treatment, your doctor places a stent inside the artery, which is often comprised of metal mesh. To keep blood from the aneurysm, it forms a wall inside the vessel.

Your doctor might advise the following to assist treat aneurysm symptoms and avoid their complications:

  • Pain relievers.
  • Medications called calcium channel blockers help prevent blood vessels from narrowing.
  • Treatments to prevent a stroke, such as drugs that widen the blood vessels so blood will flow through narrowed blood vessels, or a procedure called an angioplasty that uses a small balloon to widen blood vessels.
  • Anti-seizure medication.
  • Ventricular or lumbar draining catheters to reduce pressure on the brain.
  • Shunt surgery.
  • Rehabilitative therapy to help you relearn skills you may have lost from damage to your brain


Treatment for an unruptured brain aneurysm

Treatment may not be necessary for small aneurysms that have not ruptured and are not producing symptoms. However, it also relies on the aneurysm and your general health. Your doctors are the best people to discuss this with.


You might never be aware that you have a brain aneurysm. You might lead a trouble-free existence for the rest of your days if it doesn’t burst. However, there is always a chance that it will bleed.

If it does, you’ll require emergency medical care. The outcome could worsen the longer you wait. The longer it takes for your aneurysm to heal, the greater the likelihood that you may die or become disabled.

With a ruptured brain aneurysm, about 75% of patients will survive for more than 24 hours. But within the following six months, a fourth of these patients may experience fatal consequences.

You risk bleeding again from the same spot if your doctor doesn’t treat your aneurysm promptly enough. Therefore, it’s crucial to get medical attention as soon as you suspect you may be experiencing brain aneurysm symptoms.