When You're in the Hospital
You had a brain aneurysm. An aneurysm is a weak area in the wall of a blood vessel that bulges or balloons out. Once it reaches a certain size, it has a high chance of bursting. It can leak blood and cause bleeding along the surface of the brain. This is also called a subarachnoid hemorrhage. Sometimes bleeding can occur inside the brain.
You had surgery to prevent the aneurysm from bleeding or to treat the aneurysm after it bled. There are two types of surgery:
- Open craniotomy, during which the doctor makes a hole in your skull to place a clip on the base of the aneurysm.
- Endovascular repair, during which the doctor does surgery on areas of your body through a blood vessel.
What to Expect at Home
If you had bleeding before, during, or after surgery you may have some short- or long-term problems. These may be mild or severe. For many people, these problems get better over time.
If you had either type of surgery you may:
- Feel sad, angry, or very nervous. This is normal.
- Have had a seizure and will take medicine to prevent another one.
- Have headaches that may continue for a while. This is common.
What to expect after craniotomy and placement of a clip:
- It will take 3 to 6 weeks to fully recover. If you had bleeding from your aneurysm this may take longer. You may feel tired for up to 12 or more weeks.
- If you had a stroke or brain injury from the bleeding, you may have permanent problems such as trouble with speech or thinking, muscle weakness, or numbness.
- Problems with your memory are common, but these may improve.
- You may feel dizzy or confused, or your speech may not be normal after the surgery. If you did not have any bleeding, these problems should get better.
What to expect after endovascular repair:
- You may have pain in your groin area.
- You may have some bruising around and below the incision.
You may be able to start daily activities, such as driving a car, within 1 or 2 weeks if you did not have any bleeding. Ask your health care provider which daily activities are safe for you to do.