Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Risk Factors Symptoms Evaluation Treatment questions for doctor specialist Warning Signs Prevention Outlook Underlying Cause Anatomy

Weakened Artery in the Brain Treatment

A small unruptured cerebral aneurysm may not require treatment. Treatment depends on the size of the aneurysm, location of the aneurysm, and a person's age. In most cases, a cerebral aneurysm is not detected until it ruptures and bleeds. A ruptured cerebral aneurysm usually causes blood to collect in the space between the brain and the lining to the brain. This bleeding is called a subarachnoid hemorrhage.

A ruptured cerebral aneurysm is usually treated with surgery. During surgical clipping, a neurosurgeon places a tiny clip on the aneurysm in order to stop blood from flowing to it. A piece of the skull is removed by the neurosurgeon to provide access to the aneurysm for surgical clipping. Another surgical treatment, endovascular coiling, involves placing a small coil into the aneurysm. A catheter is threaded to the aneurysm after it is inserted into an artery in the groin. The coil is delivered through the catheter. Once the coil is placed in the aneurysm a clot forms, which stops blood from flowing into the aneurysm. Considerable rehabilitation may be required for those who experience damage to the brain from a ruptured cerebral aneurysm.

Treatment for a cerebral aneurysm may include:

  • Surgery for unruptured cerebral aneurysm
  • Endovascular coiling for cerebral aneurysm
    • A catheter is used to insert a coil, which promotes a clot to form within the aneurysm.
  • Surgical clipping:
    • A tiny clip is placed on the aneurysm
  • Rehabilitation:
    • Physical therapy
    • Occupational therapy

Treatment for subarachnoid hemorrhage may include:

Weakened Artery in the Brain Questions For Doctor

The following are some important questions to ask before and after the treatment of a cerebral aneurysm.

Questions to ask before treatment:

  • What are my treatment options?
    • Is surgery an option for me?
  • What are the risks associated with treatment?
  • Do I need to stay in the hospital?
    • How long will I be in the hospital?
  • What are the complications I should watch for?
  • How long will I be on medication?
  • What are the potential side effects of my medication?
  • Does my medication interact with nonprescription medicines or supplements?
  • Should I take my medication with food?

Questions to ask after treatment:
  • Do I need to change my diet?
  • Are there any medications or supplements I should avoid?
  • When can I resume my normal activities?
  • When can I return to work?
  • Do I need a special exercise program?
  • Will I need physical therapy?
  • Will I need occupational therapy?
  • What else can I do to reduce my risk for having this problem again?
  • How often will I need to see my doctor for checkups?
  • What local support and other resources are available?

Weakened Artery in the Brain Specialist

Physicians from the following specialties evaluate and treat a cerebral aneurysm:

Continue to Weakened Artery in the Brain Warning Signs

Last Updated: Jun 6, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Weakened Artery in the Brain References
  1. Ashley WW Jr, Chicoine MR. Subarachnoid hemorrhage caused by posterior inferior cerebellar artery aneurysm with an anomalous course of the atlantoaxial segment of the vertebral artery. Case report and review of literature. J Neurosurg. 2005 Aug;103(2):356-60. [16175868]
  2. Salary M, Quigley MR, Wilberger JE Jr. Relation among aneurysm size, amount of subarachnoid blood, and clinical outcome. J Neurosurg. 2007 Jul;107(1):13-7. [17639867]
  3. van Gijn J, Kerr RS, Rinkel GJ. Subarachnoid haemorrhage. Lancet. 2007 Jan 27;369(9558):306-18. [17258671]
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