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Understanding Your Treatment Options for a Brain Aneurysm

Understanding Your Treatment Options for a Brain Aneurysm

An aneurysm refers to a weakened part of an artery that balloons or bulges out. They don’t always cause symptoms, but if they rupture, they can cause serious bleeding. Aneurysms can happen in any artery, but an estimated 6.7 million Americans currently have an unruptured brain aneurysm. 

Our team of neurology specialists here at Link Neuroscience Institute diagnose and treat brain aneurysms here in our Oxnard and Santa Barbara, California, locations. 

Read on to learn why prompt treatment for brain aneurysms matters and what options are available to you.

Why treatment matters

Ruptured brain aneurysms can cause strokes, and they account for 3%-5% of all strokes.  Strokes can then cause their own complications.

Treating an unruptured brain aneurysm can help you avoid the serious (and sometimes fatal) complications of ruptures. 

Treatment options for unruptured brain aneurysms

Your treatment options vary depending on the severity of your aneurysm and whether it’s ruptured or not. 

If your aneurysm hasn’t ruptured, you may benefit from:

Medication

Certain medications may be prescribed to control factors that could contribute to your aneurysm's growth or rupture. This could include medications to manage high blood pressure, reduce cholesterol levels, or alleviate the risk of seizures.

Flow diverters and stents

Advanced technologies like flow diverters and stents can also help treat brain aneurysms. Flow diverters are placed across the neck of the aneurysm to redirect blood flow, while stents can be used to support weakened blood vessel walls.

Aneurysm coiling

Aneurysm coiling is a minimally invasive procedure where platinum coils are inserted into your aneurysm through a catheter. The platinum coils promote blood clotting, seal off the aneurysm, and prevent rupture.

Here at Link Neuroscience Institute, our team utilizes endovascular approaches for aneurysm coiling, which eliminates the need for a traditional large incision.

Traditional aneurysm clipping

Unlike the minimally invasive approach of aneurysm coiling, traditional aneurysm clipping does require an incision in your head. During the procedure, your Link Neuroscience Institute provider adds a clip to the neck of your aneurysm. This effectively cuts off the blood supply to your aneurysm.

Interventional neurosurgery

Interventional neurosurgery is a technique that can halt the progression of brain aneurysms before they reach the critical point of leaking or rupturing. What makes interventional neurosurgery different is that it only requires a tiny hole above your surgical site. From this tiny hole, your surgeon can correct your aneurysm with specialized tools — and without any scalpels. 

As a side note, only 500 surgeons in the United States specialize in interventional neurosurgery, and multiple Link Neuroscience Institute surgeons are on this list.

Treatment for ruptured aneurysms

If your aneurysm has ruptured, you will likely need emergency surgery. Because ruptured aneurysms can cause serious complications, including strokes, you may also require physical, speech, or occupational therapy to regain function. 

If you have a massive stroke as a result of a ruptured brain aneurysm, you may also benefit from neurocritical care.

Get help for brain aneurysms

If you suspect you have a brain aneurysm, don’t delay seeking medical treatment. Early symptoms may cause no symptoms but can also cause eye pain and headaches. If you suspect you have a ruptured aneurysm or experience a thunderclap headache, call 9-1-1.

To speak with our friendly staff, call the location of your choice or simply click here to schedule a brain aneurysm consultation. 

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