One in 50: What to know about the hidden dangers of brain aneurysms
An estimated one in 50 people harbors a potentially lethal aneurysm or vascular malformation in the brain. A brain aneurysm is a ballooning or bulge in a blood vessel in the brain. A very serious and complex problem, most are found by accident during imaging tests such as an MRI done for other reasons. Some aren’t discovered until they rupture. According to the Brain Aneurysm Foundation, every 18 minutes in the United States a brain aneurysm leaks or bursts with potentially fatal consequences.
If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with a brain aneurysm or vascular malformation of the brain, one of the most important things you can do is to find out as much as possible about the diagnosis.
Brain aneurysm risk factors include:
high blood pressure or hypertension
age over 40
certain blood infections
females have an increased risk.
Know the warning signs of a leaking or ruptured brain aneurysm
Six warning signs include:
localized or extreme headache
blurred or double vision
pain above and behind the eye
weakness and numbness, or
Call 911 and seek medical attention immediately if you experience these symptoms.
Most unruptured brain aneurysms do not cause any symptoms and go undetected. High-risk individuals should talk to their doctor to determine if screening is advised. If a brain aneurysm or vascular malformation is found, innovative treatments are available to prevent a rupture. Conservative management may be the best option for some aneurysms. It’s important to have the brain aneurysm evaluated to determine the best treatment path.