Dr. Balamurugan is a well-known Neurosurgeon having experience of more than 20 years. He pursued MBBS from Madras University and DNB from the DNB board, New Delhi. He is an esteemed member of the Neurological Society of India, the American Academy of Neurological Surgeons, and the Indian Medical Association. Various papers and articles are published by him. Dr. Balamurugan M is well-versed in the treatment of Brain Aneurysm, Brain Dural Arteriovenous Fistula Embolization, Carotid Body Tumour Embolization, Brain Aneurysm Treatment, Foot Drop, and CSF Rhinorrhoea Repair Surgery. He is currently associated with Apollo Hospitals, Chennai.
Brain Aneurysm and its symptoms
A brain aneurysm is a lump or ballooning in a blood vessel in the brain. It looks sort of a berry hanging on a stem. Bleeding in the brain occurs when a brain aneurysm leaks or ruptures. Most often it occurs within the space between the brain and therefore the thin tissues covering the brain. This type of hemorrhagic stroke is understood as subarachnoid hemorrhage. A ruptured aneurysm becomes life-threatening and requires prompt medical treatment. They may also create health problems or other symptoms. Sometimes an aneurysm may leak a little amount of blood. As a result, a severe or sudden headache occurs. Some of its common symptoms include:
- Sudden or severe headache also termed as the worst headache
- Vomiting and nausea
- Stiff neck
- Sensitivity towards light
- Double or blurred vision
- Drooping eyelid
- Loss of consciousness
How is a Brain Aneurysm diagnosed?
When a sudden or severe headache occurs, it is possibly a sign of a ruptured aneurysm. Neurosurgeons will give some tests to determine the bleeding in space between your brain and surrounding tissues or possibly another type of stroke. The tests include:
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – In MRI a magnetic field and radio waves create a detailed image of the brain, either 2-D slices or 3-D images. MRI that assesses the arteries in detail may detect the presence of an aneurysm.
- Computed tomography (CT)- It's a specialized X-ray exam usually it is used to determine bleeding within the brain. The test depicts 2-D "slices" images that are of the brain.
Along with this test, you'll receive an injection of a dye that creates it easier for blood flow within the brain and indicate the presence of an aneurysm. This test with a variation is called CT angiography.
- Cerebrospinal fluid test -There will most likely be red blood cells in the fluid surrounding your brain and spine if you've had a subarachnoid hemorrhage. A test of the cerebrospinal fluid will be required if you have symptoms of a ruptured aneurysm. This procedure of drawing cerebrospinal fluid from your back with a needle for the test is called a lumbar puncture
- Cerebral angiogram - During this procedure, the doctor inserts a skinny, flexible tube (catheter) into an outsized artery and threads it past your heart to the arteries in your brain. A special dye injected into the catheter travels to arteries through your brain.
A series of X-ray images will be used to reveal details about the conditions of your arteries and detect an aneurysm. This test is more invasive than others and is used when other diagnostic tests don't provide enough information.
Treatment of Brain Aneurysm
Major treatment options of Brain Aneurysm are:
- Surgical clipping – This procedure is done to close off an aneurysm. A section of your skull will be removed by the neurosurgeon to access the aneurysm and locate the blood vessel that feeds the aneurysm. Then a tiny metal clip will be placed on the neck of the aneurysm to stop the blood flow.
- Endovascular coiling – this is often a less invasive procedure than surgical clipping. The surgeon inserts a hollow plastic tube into an artery. It then threads it through your body to the aneurysm. A guidewire is employed to push a soft platinum wire through the catheter and into the aneurysm. The wire coils up inside the aneurysm to disrupt the blood flow and seal the aneurysm.
- Flow diverters - Latest treatments available for brain aneurysms include flow diverters, tubular stent-like implants. They divert blood flow away from an aneurysm sac. The diversion stops blood movement within the aneurysm. It stimulates the body to heal the situation, encouraging reconstruction of the parent artery. They are useful in larger aneurysms that can't be safely treated with other options.
If you have an unruptured brain aneurysm, you may lower the risk of its rupture by making few lifestyle changes. If you smoke or use recreational drugs, consult your doctor about strategies or treatment to help you quit. Changes in diet and exercise can help lower blood pressure and keep you healthy. Talk to your doctor about changes that are appropriate for you.