About 50,000 Americans have a brain aneurysm rupture each year. Depending on several factors, a ruptured brain aneurysm may be fatal, or with proper treatment, there may be a complete recovery. In May, the American Heart Association introduced revised guidelines for the management of this type of stroke called an aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH). I served as a co-author for these guidelines which outline expert recommendations for management to give patients the best possible chance at recovery. As director of neuro/spine ICU at Northwestern Memorial and a stroke researcher, I have seen firsthand the difference that an experienced team and the proper treatment can make for patients with this very serious type of stroke.
While ruptured aneurysms are relatively rare, it’s important to understand your risk factors for this or any other type of stroke. The biggest risk factor for stroke is untreated high blood pressure (hypertension) – if you have hypertension, you should see a healthcare provider regularly to control it and limit your risk for stroke. Other important risk factors are tobacco use, a family history of brain aneurysms, connective tissue diseases. To learn more about stroke risk factors and prevention, read this press release.
To learn more about the new guidelines, read the full article in Stroke.
Dr. Naidech is a co-author of the AHA guidelines, following several influential peer-reviewed publications from Northwestern Medicine®.