What You Need to Know About Cerebral Aneurysm Prevention, Causes, and Treatment
Cerebral aneurysm is a weak or thin spot on the wall of an artery in the brain that can fill with blood, causing it to enlarge and become life threatening. This can arise from an inherited weakness in the blood vessel, inflammation, or certain medical conditions. To prevent cerebral aneurysm, there are a few steps you can take and it’s important to be aware of the signs and causes.
Types of Cerebral Aneurysms
Cerebral aneurysms are categorized based on their cause, location, and size. They come in two main categories:
- Saccular Aneurysm: This type of aneurysm is the most common and it occurs in the form of a sac due to the weakened walls of a blood vessel
- Fusiform Aneurysm: This type of aneurysm is less common than the saccular variety and appears like a balloon instead of a sac. It places equal pressure on all sides of a blood vessel.
Preventing Cerebral Aneurysm
An important step in preventing cerebral aneurysm is knowing your risk factors and seeking prompt medical attention if any warning signs or symptoms develop. Having a cerebrovascular risk assessment done can also help to detect any issues early. The following steps can also help to reduce your risk of a cerebral aneurysm:
- Avoid Drug Abuse: Abusing drugs such as cocaine and other stimulants can cause irreversible damage to the arteries in the brain and can lead to the formation of an aneurysm.
- Eat a Healthy Diet: Healthy eating can help keep cholesterol levels low and prevent hardening of the arteries. Eating plenty of vegetables, fruits and whole grains can also help reduce the risk of aneurysm.
- Exercise Regularly: Regular physical activity can help to prevent the build-up of plaque in the arteries, thereby reducing the risk of aneurysm formation.
- Stop Smoking: Smoking can damage the delicate lining of the arteries and veins, leading to aneurysm formation.
- Keep Blood Pressure Levels in Check: High blood pressure can cause aneurysm formation. Keeping blood pressure levels in check with the help of diet, exercise, and medication is essential to reduce the risk of aneurysm.
Treatment of Cerebral Aneurysm
Cerebral aneurysms can be treated with a variety of methods, depending on the size and location of the aneurysm. A surgeon may perform an endovascular procedure, which involves threading a narrow catheter into the aneurysm and then deploying a tiny device to seal the aneurysm from the inside. Alternatively, a surgeon may opt for a more invasive procedure to clip the aneurysm from the outside. In extreme cases, open surgery may be necessary to remove the aneurysm.
Risks and Complications Associated with Cerebral Aneurysm
Cerebral aneurysms can become life-threatening if they burst, causing bleeding in the brain. The risk of rupture increases with the size of the aneurysm. If not treated promptly, a ruptured cerebral aneurysm can lead to severe complications, including strokes, seizures, and permanent brain damage.
For those who have been diagnosed with an aneurysm, it is important to follow the doctor’s recommendation and monitor signs and symptoms closely. With proper care and regular follow-ups with a medical professional, the potential risks of a ruptured cerebral aneurysm can be significantly reduced.