continued “Just like my mom, she was more concerned about me flying home when ‘the doctors just need to take care of this rupture,’” Bednarski said.
However, her prognosis was still grim.
“The neurosurgeon again told me there was very little hope because of the location of the rupture,” Bednarski said.
Connor’s ruptured aneurysm was something that about 30,000 people in the United States go through every year. There are almost 500,000 deaths worldwide each year caused by brain aneurysms, and half the victims are younger than 50.
“A brain aneurysm is a weak bulging spot on the wall of a brain artery very much like a thin balloon or weak spot on an inner tube,” according to The Brain Aneurysm Foundation’s website. “Over time, the blood flow within the artery pounds against the thinned portion of the wall and aneurysms form silently from wear and tear on the arteries. As the artery wall becomes gradually thinner from the dilation, the blood flow causes the weakened wall to swell outward. This pressure may cause the aneurysm to rupture and allow blood to escape into the space around the brain. A ruptured brain aneurysm commonly requires advanced surgical treatment.”
According to the website (bafound.org), about six million Americans, one in 50, have an unruptured brain aneurysm. The annual rate of rupture is about eight to 10 per 100,000, or one every 18 minutes. Ruptures are fatal in about 40 percent of cases; of those who survive, about two-thirds suffer some permanent neurological disability. Women are more likely than men to suffer from brain aneurysms at a ratio of 3:2. Smoking, high blood pressure, family history, certain disorders, age, drug use, traumatic brain injury, tumors and infection are also risk factors.
In Connor’s case, as in that of many others, there were no warning signs.