The main cause of aneurysm formation is the hardening of the arteries called atherosclerosis. However, it can also present congenitally. In addition, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking also increase the risk. It is dangerous when seen in the brain and heart. In addition, it can occur in veins in any part of the body. However, it occurs most frequently in the main vein that leaves the heart and feeds the whole body.
“What is an aneurysm?” The quick answer to the question can be given as the enlargement of blood vessels/ballooning as a result of weakening in the walls.
Aneurysms are classified according to the way they develop and the region where they develop. Specific types of aneurysms are as follows:
- Brain aneurysm
- Aorta aneurysm
Brain aneurysm: Outpouchings formed by the weakening or damage of brain vessels are called brain aneurysms. Since the veins are not very enduring, the probability of rupture is high. Therefore, it is the most dangerous type with a high probability of causing brain hemorrhages. In some cases, the outpouching is so small that it does not lead to any symptoms. In addition, it can develop due to traumas that may occur during birth and also due to various diseases.
Aortic aneurysm: A type of aneurysm that affects the main vessels of the body. It is divided into two as abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) and thoracic aortic aneurysm (TAA). It is seen in the chest, abdomen and leg areas of the person and one of the main causes is atherosclerosis.
Pseudoaneurysm: Also called false aneurysm. Although there is no any apparent swelling in the vessel wall, it may cause rupture. Causes include trauma, various infections, and stenting.
Risk factors which may play a role are as follows:
- Tobacco use
- Genetic tendencies
- High cholesterol
Symptoms differ depending on the type of aneurysm. In cases where the aneurysm ruptures, internal bleeding and death may occur if it is more advanced. In addition, the person may experience nausea, vomiting, shock, low blood pressure and dizziness. Such situations require urgent intervention. For this reason, it is extremely important for people in the risk group to have routine health screening. Aneurysms in the brain also show symptoms in two ways. The first symptom occurs when the mass compresses any area in the brain tissue. In this case, the compressed region cannot fully fulfill its function and certain malfunctions are observed. Large unruptured aneurysms cause some symptoms by pressing on brain tissue and nerves.
Symptoms of aneurysms in the brain are as follows:
- Pain in the back of the eye
- Dilation of pupils
- Double vision or disorders of visual field
- Dropping eyelids
- Facial paralysis on one side of the face
The symptoms of enlarged and ruptured aneurysms are as follows:
- Profuse hemorrhage findings
- Severe headache
- Nausea, vomiting
- Double or blurred vision
- Perception, attention and memory abnormalities
Diagnostic methods of the disease are as follows:
- Brain CT and MRI
- CT angiography
- MR angiography
- Cerebral angiography
- Cerebrospinal fluid testing
Effective treatment methods are used in aneurysms that cause bleeding with rupture. The methods used for aneurysm treatment are as follows:
- Surgical clips
- Endovascular coiling
- Mesh placement
Stents are woven fabrics that are reinforced with metal wires and turned into tubes. These stents are placed in the patient's ballooning portion of the vein. Thus, the blood now passes through this tube and the ballooned part is disabled. Patients with 5 cm or more ballooning in the intrathoracic and abdominal arteries can benefit from this method.