A cerebral aneurysm is caused from ballooning of the brain blood vessel. The condition usually develops on weak artery walls, and may not even be noticeable in many cases. Rarely do these aneurysms burst or rupture, in which case the blood enters the skull leading to a stroke. This is referred to as subarachnoid hemorrhage. These hemorrhages can be fatal in nature and require the patient to be treated promptly by a neurosurgeon. Cerebral aneurysms do not have distinct causes. They can develop due to defective or weak artery walls, or may be present in the individual from birth. Cerebral aneurysms have risk factors which may increase the odds of developing the conditions.
Aneurysm Risk Factors
- Family history: Individuals whose first-degree relatives have suffered from cerebral aneurysms have a higher chance of developing the condition.
- High blood pressure: Individuals who have high blood pressure are at a risk of suffering from a subarachnoid hemorrhage. High cholesterol and clogging or plaque buildup in artery walls may also lead to cerebral aneurysms. Individuals with narrow aortas may also develop an aneurysm.
- Inherited disorders: There are various inherited diseases and disorders that can put a person at a risk of cerebral aneurysm. Connective tissue disorders like Ehlers-Danlos syndrome make the blood vessels in the body weaker and could lead to aneurysms. Cerebral AVM or Cerebral arteriovenous malformation, a condition where the blood flow between the veins and arteries in the cerebral region are interrupted also poses a risk of aneurysm. Polycystic kidney disease which leads to the development of fluid filled sacs in the kidney, can increase the blood pressure, and in turn make the individual susceptible to cerebral aneurysms.
- Smoking: Smoking can increase the blood pressure in an individual and may increase the likeliness of developing an aneurysm.