An aneurysm is a blood-filled bulge in the wall of a blood vessel.
Aneurysms can occur in arteries in any part of your body. The most common areas where they occur are in the main artery carrying blood to your heart (aortic aneurysm) and the brain.
When the size of an aneurysm increases, there is a risk of rupture resulting in severe haemorrhage (bleeding) bringing on additional complications such as brain damage or (in the worst case) death.
Symptoms of an unruptured brain aneurysm can include:
- An extremely severe and sudden headache
- Nausea and vomiting
- A stiff neck
- Vision problems
- Face or eye pain
- Seizures (fits)
Symptoms of a ruptured aneurysm are similar but may also include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Slurred speech
- Mental confusion
- Being sensitive to light
Brain aneurysms are a medical emergency. Dial 999 if you think you or someone you are with shows symptoms of a brain aneurysm. Early diagnosis and treatment to prevent the aneurysm from rupturing is critical.