Aneurysms are a serious health condition that could be life-threatening. The biggest problem with aneurysms is that they do not always have symptoms. The only symptom you may have is a burst in the artery. Aneurysms are not merely a cardiovascular issue. When you experience aneurysms in the brain, they are called cerebral aneurysms. They are very serious because once they burst, they will lead to bleeding on the brain. If an aneurysm is not treated, it will cause brain damage. Understanding the seriousness of an aneurysm will help make you aware. Awareness brings this condition to light.
There are blood vessels all over the body. Capillaries, veins, and arteries spread throughout the body to supply it with blood. Arteries are the largest of the blood vessels. This is the source of an aneurysm. An aneurysm is a weakening in the artery wall. When an area of the wall becomes weak, it will bulge. That bulging spot is where an aneurysm is located. As the wall becomes weaker and weaker, it tends to rupture. The rupture affects the nerves in the brain. The brain is only able to function because of the blood and oxygen flow. Without blood flow, there is no oxygen flow and the neurons will not operate properly.
There is no one specific cause of aneurysms. A lot of times aneurysms have hereditary causes. If you have family members with aneurysms, you should be aware of the problem because it could run in the family. If you have had an aneurysm previously, you are also at risk for future aneurysms. Health issues are a major factor in aneurysms. Hardening of the arteries, formerly known as atherosclerosis, is a condition primarily associated with your diet. High blood pressure is another health condition that leads to aneurysms when it is not treated. Age and Race are not primary causes, but they are both factors. Both African Americans and women are more at risk of getting an aneurysm than anyone else. If you are an African American woman, it does not mean you will have an aneurysm, but it is something to be aware of and have an understanding about. Smoking is not necessarily a cause, but it may lead to a rupture of an aneurysm.
Brain aneurysms do not always have symptoms. It is good to know the symptoms in the case that you do start feeling them. Symptoms are dependent upon where an aneurysm is in the brain. Some aneurysms sit in areas of the brain that affect cognitive skills. Others lie in areas that affect your eyesight. You may start experiencing blurred vision and slurred speech. Headaches may become frequent and turn into migraines. When you have a brain aneurysm that ruptures, the symptoms are life threatening. You will have a terrible headache and along with that the vision will blur, and speech will slur. Some people faint or have seizures. Others may have symptoms of a stroke. If this happens, you should seek medical attention right away.
Diagnosis & Treatment
Aneurysms are a condition that can be diagnosed and treated by a neurologist. Typically whenever you suffer from headaches or migraines, you go to a neurologist. Both headaches and migraines are problems associated with the blood vessels in the head. Any pain that we feel is based on the nerves. For this reason, a neurologist treats headaches and migraines. They will normally do a diagnostic test. MRA scans are common because it allows the doctor to see if there are any problems with the bones, tissues, or blood vessels. They can see if there is fluid on the brain and they can also see aneurysms. If you have an aneurysm, the doctor will identify it on the MRA. CT scans are also used. If you are looking specifically for an aneurysm, a CTA scan is the best because it is more precise.
Treatment for aneurysms is dependent upon many different factors. Treatment depends on the size and the location of an aneurysm. Small aneurysms do not typically need surgery. The doctor will just monitor it to make sure it does not grow. Small aneurysms do not usually rupture, so it is not high risk. Larger aneurysms will require surgery. The option to do surgery is also dependent upon your age and if you have had aneurysms before. Surgery is risky. Any surgery on the brain is risky and may cause problems, but it could save your life.
Aneurysms are very serious, and if you or anyone you know has had aneurysms in the past or experiencing symptoms, you should see a physician. Aneurysms do not typically go away, but there are things you can do to minimize the possibility of growth. If you have high blood pressure or suffer from atherosclerosis, you put yourself at a higher risk of having an aneurysm. Both of these conditions can be avoided with proper diet and exercise. Talk with a neurologist about your family history. If aneurysms run in the family, you should be aware of it and keep an eye on it. Aneurysms do not have to end your life. Gain awareness and gain control.
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