When most of us think of the word aneurysm, in a movie where someone rushes into the operating room, followed by many doctors and nurses, or the character stops in the middle of a speech and dies within a second. Imagine a chaotic scene. All of these projects see aneurysms as a very scary and deadly condition. But stop thinking about what actually causes an aneurysm and understand when to worry and when to ease it.
What is a cerebral aneurysm?
An aneurysm is a weakening and swelling of the blood vessel wall. A cerebral aneurysm or cerebral aneurysm is when it occurs in a blood vessel in the brain.
The majority of aneurysms are silent and are only found during investigation for other reasons, with very little potential for harm. In fact, most aneurysms have been discovered by chance.
But if they are harmful Cerebral aneurysm There is a risk of rupture or leakage and can be catastrophic, especially if not seen by a doctor at the right time.
What are some common types of cerebral aneurysms?
Cerebral aneurysms are most often saccular. These look like berries hanging from the stem and are usually at the base of the brain.
The other type is spindle-shaped and the aneurysm bulges on all sides of the artery.
A fungal infection that weakens the walls of blood vessels.
Cerebral aneurysms can also be categorized as small, large, or huge, depending on their size.
What Causes a Cerebral Aneurysm?
There are many risk factors that can cause a cerebral aneurysm. There are several things we can’t control, such as polycystic kidney disease, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, tuberous sclerosis, and genetic conditions such as arteriovenous malformations. People with a family history of these diseases are at increased risk of developing a cerebral aneurysm.
Others are elements that can be changed.
- High blood pressure
- Atherosclerosis, a cholesterol plaque along the walls of blood vessels
- Use of alcohol
- A specific infection that weakens the walls of blood vessels is syphilis
- Substance abuse with stimulants such as cocaine and amphetamines.
Apart from these, certain types of head injuries and brain tumors can also cause aneurysms.
The theory is that when blood flow in a blood vessel is disturbed, the blood vessel wall weakens and is slowly pushed outward.
What complications are expected from a cerebral aneurysm?
Think of an aneurysm like a balloon. When the balloon inflates, it grows slowly until it bursts.
Not all aneurysms are guaranteed to rupture, but one of the most annoying complications of aneurysms is the so-called rupture.
A ruptured cerebral aneurysm causes bleeding into the skull, which can be rapidly catastrophic and fatal if not treated in time. These are so-called hemorrhagic strokes, or strokes caused by hemorrhage.
A ruptured cerebral aneurysm most often occurs in the space between the brain and the thin tissue that covers it. Such hemorrhagic stroke is called subarachnoid hemorrhage.
Bleeding can cause seizures, increased pressure in the brain, changes in sodium levels, spasms of blood vessels, blood supply to other areas and brain damage.
What are the symptoms to watch out for if you are worried about an aneurysm?
Small aneurysms are usually asymptomatic and unnoticeable. However, large aneurysms and ruptured or leaked aneurysms are dangerous and require immediate medical attention.
Large, unruptured aneurysms can compress nearby nerves and brain tissue, causing unilateral headaches, pain above or behind the eyes, dizziness, difficulty speaking, movement, numbness or weakness on one side. There is sex.
However, rupture or leakage of an aneurysm can occur in the following cases:
- Sudden and very severe headache
- Insensitivity to light
- Nuchal rigidity
- Sudden blurred vision
- Difficult to speak
- Loss of consciousness
- Hanging eyelids
If you or your loved one develops any of the above symptoms, you should seek medical assistance in an emergency.
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How does your doctor diagnose a cerebral aneurysm?
Your doctor may choose to do an imaging test to see if you have an aneurysm after assessing your medical history and doing a physical examination.
A CT scan of the brain is performed for people at risk of ruptured aneurysm. This is because it is the fastest diagnostic imaging method.
Other diagnostic tests your doctor may ask for are:
- MRI brain
- MR angiography
- CT angiography
- Cerebral angiography, an invasive procedure.
If there is a high suspicion of a ruptured aneurysm with intracranial hemorrhage, a doctor may perform a lumbar puncture to find evidence of blood in the spinal fluid.
What are the treatments for cerebral aneurysms?
Treatment of cerebral aneurysms depends on the type, location, cause, and complications of the aneurysm.
- For small aneurysms, your doctor may monitor and follow up on your health. He may advise on lifestyle changes to help reduce the risk of your complications.
- Other treatment options may focus on reducing the effects of causative factors such as medications to control blood pressure, cholesterol, and so on.
- For large or ruptured aneurysms, surgical and minimally invasive options are an important modality of treatment.
- Surgical options include aneurysm clipping and non-surgical options include endovascular coil embolization. This is minimally invasive surgery performed by inserting a stent into one of the large blood vessels that goes to the area of the aneurysm and releases the coil. It emits an electric current that promotes the formation of blood clots and the occlusion of the aneurysm sac.
- For complex aneurysm bleeding, neurosurgeons may perform decompression surgery to remove a portion of the skull to relieve pressure on the brain, but only in very severe cases.
Now that you’ve learned everything about cerebral aneurysms, you’ll find that even if they can cause dangerous and serious complications, they can be contained and managed with timely treatment. As always, it’s important to know when to seek professional help.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- What can you do to reduce your chances of getting a cerebral aneurysm?
Keeping your blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol within normal limits, quitting smoking, and reducing alcohol intake can help prevent the possibility of becoming acquired. Cerebral aneurysm..
- Is a cerebral aneurysm hereditary?
Most aneurysms are not hereditary. However, if you have a genetic condition that predisposes to a cerebral aneurysm, your relatives may be in the same condition. Similarly, if two or more relatives have a medical history, you may consider screening your family as a precautionary measure after consulting with a specialist.
- Can the patient resume all normal activity after clipping / coil embolization of a cerebral aneurysm?
The recovery rate depends on whether the aneurysm has ruptured or not. For unruptured aneurysms, most patients can resume all normal activity after a successful procedure. For people with a ruptured aneurysm, recovery may take longer, depending on the type of complications they are facing.