Brain Aneurysm – A Silent Killer

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What is Aneurysm?

Aneurysm is a serious medical condition that occurs when a part of a blood vessel/artery swells like a balloon. This could either be due to the blood vessel being damaged or a weakness in the walls of the blood vessels. Found to occur among patients of all age groups, aneurysm can affect any part of the body, but is mostly found to occur in the brain.

Brain aneurysm

The brain receives oxygen from a circulatory network of arteries called ‘Circle of Willis’, found at the base of the brain. When an artery’s junction point is found to be weak or damaged, the corresponding blood vessels tend to swell into a small sac like structure, also called as aneurysm. When the aneurysm increases in size, the risk of rupturing also increases causing severe hemorrhage in and around the affected areas.  This can lead into a series of complications and may even cause death; 40% of aneurysm ruptures are fatal.

Causes

There is no defined cause for an aneurysm to occur. However, there are several medical reasons and hereditary factors that make a person most susceptible to this deathly condition. According to studies, people affected with high blood pressure, infected artery walls (Mycotic aneurysm), previous traumas and tumors including strokes and drug abuses, have a higher chance of experiencing brain aneurysm. In addition, patients with a family history of brain aneurysms and those who are chain smokers are more likely to have an aneurysm.

Symptoms

Aneurysms are known to be silent killers that show very little or no symptoms at all. They vary depending on the size, rate of growth and location. Some of the major symptoms include severe headaches, nausea and vomiting, loss of consciousness, seizures, blurred vision and numbness of the face.

Treatment

Traditionally, the treatment used for brain aneurysm was surgery, as patients were diagnosed at their most critical stage, leaving no room for any kind of medical treatments. Currently, there are 2options available. They are called surgical clipping or endovascular coiling. The former refers to the clipping of the neck of the aneurysm, while in the latter, a catheter is used to reach the aneurysm located in the brain.

Here’s how Dr. S. Ikbal Siddique and Dr. Gopal Acharia, Neurosurgeons at Narayana Multispeciality Hospital, Barasat, Kolkata treated a patient suffering from brain aneurysm, through the surgical clipping procedure. Mrs. Archana Chandra, 31, from Barasat, was suffering from severe headache, vomiting and loss of consciousness. Her CT scan showed that she was suffering from sub arachnoid hemorrhage-caused due to the rupture of a swollen artery. She was rushed to NH Barasat, where the doctors carefully diagnosed her before proceeding for the surgery.

Despite a lengthy and challenging procedure, the operation was successful. Post-surgery, Archana was monitored in the ICU department until she reached a stable condition after which she was discharged.

Narayana Multispeciality Hospital, Barasat, Kolkata provides such complex surgical procedures with high-quality infrastructure, for half or even less than half of what the other well-established hospitals would normally charge.

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