Aneurysm symptoms

While it is not always the case, sometimes when you have an excruciating headache—you know, the ones during which it feels like an ice pick is being driven through your skull—it feels like there might be something wrong. The pain, so intense, can make you frightened to go to sleep because you don’t know what is causing the excessive discomfort. In rare cases, the person with this fear will be completely right. Instead of suffering a normal headache, this person is suffering a brain aneurysm and needs medical attention immediately.

Overview of Brain Aneurysms
Your brain is filled with blood vessels. Sometimes, when you have an underlying disorder like neurofibromatosis, marfan syndrome, polycystic kidney disease, or a genetic history of brain aneurysms, one of the blood vessels can weaken and then, because it lacks the strength and structure to stay in place, it begins to bulge out like a balloon filling with water. Over time, the aneurysm can fill up more and more and can, eventually, rupture.

Aneurysm Symptoms to Look For
Of course, you can’t go running off to the hospital every time you have a headache, so you must know aneurysm symptoms to help you determine if there is something wrong that warrants a hospital trip. Aneurysm symptoms fall into two camps—the symptoms that happen before an aneurysm ruptures and those that happen after the aneurysm ruptures.

Before the Aneurysm Ruptures
When your weakened blood vessel is just beginning to balloon up you will have symptoms that are slightly less serious than the symptoms you experience when the blood vessel ruptures. These symptoms include:

  • Changes in behavior that are sudden and unexpected
  • Balance and coordination problems
  • Excessive sleepiness
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Thinking and reacting problems
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Loss or difficulty with short term memory

Going to the hospital when you experience these symptoms can prevent the aneurysm from rupturing and causing permanent damage to the weakened blood vessel in your brain. It is important that you not take too long to self diagnose before you make the trip. With a brain aneurysm, or any kind of aneurysm, time is of the essence so think and act quickly. If you do not have someone to drive you to the hospital then you should cause an ambulance. Driving a car while your brain aneurysm ruptures could result in a car accident and further injuries.

After the Aneurysm Ruptures
Eventually, your weakened blood vessel will be filled with blood to a point that it can no longer handle the pressure and it will rip, or rupture, letting some of the blood out. This is a very dangerous situation and requires immediate medical attention. Symptoms can include:

  • Vomitting
  • Nausea
  • Neck pain
  • Consistently stiff neck
  • Light sensitivity
  • Dilated pupils
  • Double vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Losses in physical sensation

Aneurysm Treatment
Believe it or not, there is a medical treatment available to treat brain aneurysms. It can be surgically clipped to prevent or stop rupture. This is done during a surgical procedure on patients who are not yet comatose. In addition to clipping, doctors may also attempt to drain the fluid from the weakened blood vessel. This is done with a drainage tool that is placed in your skull.

Any time you experience a headache that is so painful that you seriously consider going to the hospital, you probably should even if you don’t have any of the other aneurysm symptoms listed above. It is also important to remember that aneurysms are not just a brain disorder. They can also occur within blood vessels in other parts of your body.

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Last updated on Dec 30th, 2009 and filed under Cardiovascular Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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