Lehigh County Health & Medicine Fall/Winter 2020 - 7

L C M E D S O C .O R G

BRAIN ANEURYSMS
AND SUBARACHNOID
HEMORRHAGE
By CHRISTOPHER MELINOSKY, M.D.
Board Certified Neurologist, Lehigh Valley Health Network

Introduction

Subarachnoid hemorrhage describes bleeding into the space of the
brain between the pia lining the brain and the surface of the brain. When
subarachnoid hemorrhage is nontraumatic, it is typically due to rupture
of an aneurysm. Brain aneurysms are the result of weakness of the arterial
wall, causing a ballooning of the layers of the artery typically at branching
points. A ruptured aneurysm is a neurologic emergency requiring immediate
medical care in a specialized intensive care unit. Nearly 15% of patients
with aneurysm rupture die before reaching the hospital. Nontraumatic
subarachnoid hemorrhage due to aneurysm rupture is a rare disease,
making up only 3% of all strokes. Treatment involves very complex multidisciplinary management with a team of individuals in a neuroscience
intensive care unit. Overall the mortality has decreased with the advent
of dedicated neurocritical care physicians and more modern treatment
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Lehigh County Health & Medicine Fall/Winter 2020

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