Your Health: Sign of an Aneurysm - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Your Health: Sign of an Aneurysm

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Birmingham, AL -

It's described as.. the worst headache of your life.
     Neurologists say aneurysms are more common than you know.
     ABC 33/40's, Linda Mays shows us the life threatening condition, how it could affect you and how you can reduce your risk.#
 
Script
 
         UAB Neurosurgeon, Dr. Mark Harrigan says, "If you have the worse headache of your life ripping tearing catastrophe fall to floor nausea vomit that is a sign ruptured aneurysm call 911 get to the hospital."
     That severe headache only lasts a few seconds or minutes indicating a life-threatening ruptured aneurysm in the brain.
       Harrigan says, "Aneurysm is like a blister or bubble on the wall of an artery.  It represents the weak spot in the artery that bulges out over time. They tend to look like a balloon or a blister arising from the normal artery."
 
     UAB Neurosurgeon, Mark Harrigan says, they see a high volume of people with a ruptured aneurysm. Two hundred ruptured aneurysm patients a year.
  He says they also see a lot of people with unruptured aneurysms as well.
 
     Dr. Harrigan says, When aneurysms occur they tend to occur off the branches underneath along in here. The CT scan show the basil artery which is right here; so, you can see that most aneurysms tend to occur underneath the brain from the major arteries.

 
 Dr. Harrigan says aneurysms can cause a certain kind of stroke, called an bleeding or hemorrhagic stroke.

  He says, "Ok, if you  look at all people with stroke about 80 percent  of people have an Ischemic stroke that is a stroke that occurs due to interruption of the blood supply to  part of  the brain. More  commonly stroke are that kind.
Hemorrhagic or bleeding stroke are about 20 percent of all strokes and that's where some form of bleeding in the brain from something. Overall about three percent of strokes are caused by rupture brain aneurysm. But, ruptured brain aneurysms only account for about three percent of all strokes but  a significant percent of bleeding strokes."

 
  Cigarette smoking and uncontrolled high blood pressure  are the two most common risk factorS for the growth and rupture of an intercranial aneurysm.  family history is also a risk factor.
 
 But, Dr. Harrigan says a lot of aneurysms appear out of the blue without those risk factors.
 
  Harrigan says, "They don't usually cause any problems with the brain lest  they cause bleeding.  On rare occasions unruptured an can interfere with nerves of the brain going to the face or eyes or something."

   He says, unruptured aneurysms don't usually cause problems with the brain unless they cause bleeding.

   Harrigan says, "When a person has a ruptured brain aneurysm  the chances of survival is roughly two thirds now a  days.   For the survivors  of a rupture aneurysm about half of those survivors are disabled to some degree , the other half go on  to lead a normal life."


   To reduce your risk of an aneurysm, stop smoking and control your blood pressure.
  One neurologist suggests to remember the signs of a stroke us the acronym F.A.S.T.
  F is for Facial droop.   
  A is for arm weakness or drift.  
  S is for Speech disturbance, as in garbled words.
  T is for Time.  What time did the symptoms start and it's time to dial 911.
  But, when people have a ruptured brain aneurysm, they describe it  as the worse headache of their life.. Along with nausea and vomiting.
  You or someone should call 911.

 

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