What is a brain aneurysm?

Brain aneurysms are bulging, weakened spots in a blood vessel that can rupture. One in 50 people have aneurysms, but many do not rupture.

A brain aneurysm is a "bubble" that forms in an artery in the brain; if the artery ruptures, it can be life-threatening.

A brain aneurysm (also called a cerebral aneurysm) is a blister-like bulge in a weak part of a blood vessel in the brain. It can go unnoticed for a long time. In fact, 1% to 6% of Americans have an aneurysm they don't know about. If left untreated, however, the pressure of the blood causes that area of the wall of the blood vessel to become even weaker, which allows the aneurysm to grow. Eventually the aneurysm may burst, which causes a stroke.                                              

A brain aneurysm is an out pouching in a weak spot of an artery of the brain. Most brain aneurysms are asymptomatic. 

If a brain aneurysm ruptures, it causes bleeding inside the head that can be potentially fatal. The most common symptom of a ruptured aneurysm is severe headache and it should be attended emergently. The larger the aneurysms are, the higher the chance of rupture. 

Aneurysms can be diagnosed with CTA, MRI/A, and more specifically with femoral cerebral angiogram. Brain aneurysms can be treated by endovascular coil embolization or craniotomy and clip ligation.

Continue Learning about Brain Aneurysms

Where in the brain do aneurysms develop?
Kathleen B. Mullin, MDKathleen B. Mullin, MD
An aneurysm is a weakening of a blood vessel wall which then forms an outpouching that fills with bl...
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How are cerebral aneurysms classified?
Piedmont Heart InstitutePiedmont Heart Institute
There are three types of cerebral aneurysms. A saccular aneurysm is a rounded or pouch-like sac of b...
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.