My name is Casey and this is my first blog that I have done. This is also the first time I have ever focused on one topic for an extended period of time and explored all aspects of the topic. I have a hard time finding the right words to make my writing worth reading.
The topic I have chosen to blog about is Brain Aneurysm’s and the consequences that come from the aneurysm. According to The Brain Aneurysm Foundation, a brain aneurysm is a weak bulging spot on the wall of a brain artery very much like a thin balloon or weak spot on an inner tube. Aneurysms form silently from wear and tear on the arteries, and sometimes can form from injury, infection, or inherited tendency.
The reason I chose this topic was because my mom died of a brain aneurysm and this topic is one that is close to my heart and I feel that I should inform others about how dangerous an aneurysm can be considering 25,000 people each year experience a ruptured aneurysm (Mayo Clinic) and two-thirds die. For those one-third who are lucky enough to survive have to deal with life long complications. Complications that can arise from an aneurysm can be any where from minor to major such as headaches and fatigue to seizures and/or strokes. Brain aneurysms also can cause emotional problems. The survivor may become depressed and isolate themselves from family and friends and in some cases the depression leads to loss of hope to continue fighting the aftermath of an aneurysm. For the rest of the survivors life they will be in and out of therapy and doctors office to make sure that they are doing okay and to monitor the progress of the aneurysm.
Aneurysms also cause problems not just for the patient but the family as well. The family members have a hard time watching their loved one suffer for an extended period of time. Watching someone who has suffered from a brain aneurysm is a hard task that no one should have to deal with, but it happens everyday. Once the aneurysm has ruptured and the patient seems to be recovering, complications can arise and it is not easy watching someone be in constant pain when you have no idea how long the pain will last.
Brain aneurysm can be caused by many different factors. These factors can include smoking, heavy drinking, drug abuse, high blood pressure and the most known cause of an aneurysm is previous head trauma. Brain aneurysms are also hereditary to a certain extent. Children are two times more likely to have an aneurysm if one of their parents have had an aneurysm.
Many people are unaware that they have an aneurysm until it ruptures. An aneurysm can lay dormant in the brain for a short time or even a whole life time without even causing any problems. Before the aneurysm ruptures the person may experience a major headache, vision loss, nausea and numbness in the face. In many instances major stress is the final trigger for causing the aneurysm to rupture. Once the aneurysm ruptures it is a matter of minutes that decide whether the person will be able to survive.
Every year there are more brain aneurysms then there should be. Just by knowing the signs of an aneurysm can save who knows how many peoples life’s. People just need to be informed. My mom had an aneurysm on May 8th 2005 after she was involved in a hit and run auto accident on the Gene Snyder on her way to work. Her aneurysm ruptured while she was the phone with her parents and she laid helpless on the side of the highway till the ambulance arrived. The doctors tried surgery but no matter what the doctors did, her life was unable to be saved and on May 19th she was taken off of life support and her life had ended.
The death of my mom, in my opinion could have been prevented if my family and I had known of the symptoms and risks factors that cause an aneurysm. When my mom was 19 she was in a major motorcycle accident and had severe brain damage which is one risk factor that can cause an aneurysm. My mom also smoked and occasionally drank which would be risk factor number two and three. Finally, she had blurry vision and constant headaches and according to the NIH Neurological Institute (www.ninds.nih.gov), “Severe headache are most often a giveaway to a ruptured aneurysm.”(Picariello) Somedays her headaches were so bad she couldn’t even get out of bed or drive a car because of the blurry vision. If we would have known the symptoms all the pain and suffering could have been prevented.
People who were lucky enough to survive have to undergo surgery. The surgery method used is called coiling where doctors fill in the ruptured vessel with platinum coils which form to the shape of the aneurysm and help prevent future aneurysms. 125,000 patients world-wide have been treated with the platinum coils.
The rest of the year I will be focusing on brain aneurysms and all that it comes along with such as the social identities associated with people who have had a brain aneurysm, telling the story of a brain aneurysm from beginning to end, the space in which survivors identify themselves with the most and finally the dividing lines between the survivors and the onlookers.
“Cerebral Aneurysm Fact Sheet.” National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. 22 jan 2010. National Institutes of Health, Web. 31 Jan 2010. <http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/cerebral_aneurysm/detail_cerebral_aneurysm.htm#144253098>.
The Brain Aneurysm Foundation. 2009. Mintz Levin, Web. 31 Jan 2010. <http://www.bafound.org/support/recovery.php>.
Picariello, Gary. “Aneurysm: The Silent Killer.” (2007): n. pag. Web. 31 Jan 2010. http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/273382/aneurysm_the_silent_killer.html?cat=5>.