How often do you have a cat scan or MRI if it has been years since your surgery

Just wondering for anyone who had surgery 10 years or longer that had the aneurysm clipped not coiled . Do you still get cat scan or MRI. I was told I can’t get MRI because of the clipped they used.My first surgery was 15 years ago that aneurysm was clipped the other one I had was ruptured. I now only see my neuro once a year the last cat scan I had was more than five years ago. I’m just wonder if you guys think cat scan or MRI do not need to be done if it been over 10 years or do you think we still need to get it check out once and a while. Thanks for any input

Hi Patty ... I will share this with our membership because we have some long time survivor like yourself...most often, our checkups are told to us through our surgeons and/or neurologists...Thoughts out to you ~ Colleen

I have an MRI compatible clip. I was clipped in 97 … I think they were relatively new then…

I only have MRIs when there’s a problem. There’s no Need to have a scan unless I’m having problems.

Hi Patty,

I had my ruptured aneurysm clipped in 2001 (June). Yearly I would have CAT scan done. At the 5 year anniversary, I had a cerebral angiogram done, which I am told does not need to be repeated. Because of my ongoing taste issue, a doctor ordered a MRI. I also had been told I could never have this due to the clip. However, he suggested checking with the Neurosurgeon regarding this as newer clips are being used which do not conflict with the test. Sure enough that was the case. So, the only precaution I need to take with the MRI is to have it done and then have the programmable shunt stetting checked. The MRI sometimes alters that. I see a local Neurosurgeon yearly, mostly just a routine visit and to check the status if I have any issues with the shunt. It was suggested by him that he did not feel there was any reason to repeat a CAT scan or MRI at this point, at least not on a yearly basis.

I have 2 aneurysms, the smaller one ruptured the larger one did not. Both of mine were clipped in 2008. My Neurologist said to have an MRA (like an MRI but dye is used) every 5
years for regular maintenance.

My surgery was in '98. I was told that I cannot have an MRI because of the clip. I think it was a cat scan I had 3 years ago. It was not a checkup, it was part of tests that were done because I had applied for Disability. Several things were done and I don't remember all of them. I had been told by my surgeon at my appointment with him a month after the surgery that I didn't need any further appointments. He didn't say anything about any follow-up tests.

Hi Patty,

I'm not as long out from clipped aneurysms but thought I'd chime in anyway. At 5 year mark, I had a cerebral angiogram. I've never had an MRA nor MRI. I was not given further instructions re another appt. If I was concerned I would call neurosurgeon's office. And I have called them about other things, like is it safe to travel on an airplane, or any other things about which I may be concerned.

Per my neurology he wants me to see him once a year and I have to have an MRI done before I go see him. Good luck!

I had two surgeries in 2005 had six nonruptured clipped I go every five years for an MRI

I had surgery for clipping of a ruptured brain aneurysm in 1994. I was never told to get regular check-ups. I had a doctor that didn’t seem to think that it made a difference but I wondered. I still sometimes would get bad headaches so I’d go to an emergency room and they’d give me a cat scan. I was also told not to have an MRI. But I’ve never had any problems. I always wondered if I could get another ameurysm, but one doctor would say yes and another no. I guess that’s why I turned to the Internet and found this page. It’s been really helpful. Sometimes I wish there was a web page with questions and answers just for post-clipping sugery people like us. There are so many questions I still have. Thanks.

My aneurysm clipping was 22 years ago and I haven't been for CAT scans since I left the hospital in 1992. Because the surgery was so long ago, I am not sure if I can have an MRI for any reason, due to the fact that the clips (multiple) in my brain may be magnetic responsive; and there probably isn't any way to find out without actually having the MRI.


Hi, follow up is an issue post-surgery. 28 had a brain aneurysm- surgery and had it clipped in 2000. Two weeks later, had a Vasospasm and around then had a shunt. I used to see the neurosurgeon every year. I always did a CAT without contrast. Now he has passed away, too me about a couple of years to find someone else. Now this one, gave me a CAT WITH DYE. I had a big deal getting myself back couldn’t walk head pain etc. Thank Goodness everything is fine. However, between thoughts 2 drs. One was focused on the Shunt, the other one is more focused for more aneurysms - which they never thought about that again. So know he wants me to go every 5 yrs for I new CAT
But surprised no one is checking the shunt regularly ?

It was just nine years ago in June that i had my ruptured Brain aneurysm, complicated by 6 additional brain surgeries due to massive infection at the clipping sight, resulting in removal of my skull on right side and replacing it with a plate, and none of my doctors, ever suggested a follow up with a neuroligist. Not a great feeling. Seems like they swept it under the rug as the years go by but as you know, the trauma of the whole experience never goes away. They flat out told me no MRIS because of the metal plate.

Best of Luck,

It has not been 10 years since my clipping, but in thought I would reply just to help round out the discussion. Had a ruptured aneurysm clipped in 2010 and after a couple of follow up appts was told by the neurosurgeon I required no more visits. I did see a neurologist for help with the headaches for a year or two. Recently I needed an MRI of my brain done for, unfortunately, other serious health issues. It was done at the same facility as the clipping, so they were able to look up my records and discern which type of clip was used. Although it delayed the scan for quite some time, they then accessed a data bank that determined it was safe for me to have a MRI with that particular clip in place. At almost four years out, I still am amazed at how our bodies and brains continue to heal and adjust.

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Thank you all so much for all of your replys.things have come along way since I had my two surgies in 1998 and 1999. As some of you when my head hurt so bad the doctor did the test cats scan but I had just also recall that my kidney doctor and my neurologist both bump head when I was getting an angiogram every year they said I still had two little ones my kidney doctor said the dye is bad for my kidney so he did not want them done and he said I have to be careful with cat scan with contrast. The angiogram always show I had two more wee ones but the cat scan showed nothing so I guess I always question do I still have them in my head
So that why I wonder how often people were check. It made me feel better reading that some have not been check in years.

I’m only 7 years past 2 craniotomies- 1 ruptured, 2nd clipped. No scans, was told didn’t need them, the 3 aneurysms were present since birth and no more would form. I did have an EEG, showed what was called a complex partial seizure disorder. but I was having an aura and a strange taste in my outh. Very infrequent now. I had a stroke after my 2nd craniotomy, at that event lost sense of smell and taste. They have partially returned. Life goes on. It’s just hard to know what the next issue might be.

Hi Patty…i had a ruptured Sept 2004 and it was clipped, another was found but did not rupture, had that one clipped December 2004. I had MRI each year for the first 5 years afterwards which were ordered and seen by my neurosurgeon. The results were also sent to my neurologist each time. After 5 years he didnt feel it necessary to have them annually unless I have big problems.

At my first MRI I was told it was important to have my clips information with me, to be able to give to MRI tech as MRI can pull clip and cause bleed…and we annie survivors dont want another bleed thats for dang sure!! LOL
So I got the clip info from my surgeons office, the maker name and serial numbers. So i can give to the tech doing the MRI. I gave this info to my family, its in my purse with my RX list too. My thought is if I have it in my purse and I am in an accident it will be found. LOL honestly, if an emergency popped up and a MRI was needed would someone search my purse first?? No. I highly doubt it.

Personally, it has been 6 yrs since my rupture - and I am now on the MRI every 5 yrs for the time being-personally if they were to tell me no more after 10 yrs not sure I would be comfortable with that-I would still want followup to reassure me everything is still ok

Hi, my clipping was done in 1995 and my insurance company must have a dart board with my picture on it for all the billing providers have done! I have a titanium clip that can be used with an MRI and have had 6 MRIs in the 19 years, 1 MRA, and probably a dozen CT scans, two because of trauma to the skull from falling (my balance is terrible). I've probably had more scans than average because of those events.

I'm followed by a neurologist (mostly because of postsurgical epilepsy), my neurosurgeon has retired, and I recently have worked with a different neurosurgeon to have the skull repaired because the technique used to close the original craniotomy had deteriorated. Before the most recent surgery (cranioplasty), I had a CT scan, two years after the latest CT scan done because I banged my head against a wall and got a concussion.

My neurologist is monitoring the changes over time (it's valuable to have one provider to do that) since she has all the films and radiologist's readings. The most recent CT was concerning because my neurologist said no one would do a clipping the way my original neurosurgeon had done and that the area of encephalomalacia (brain scarring) was "quite large" and the neurosurgeon agreed after he had seen the brain during surgery.

It's probably every two years or so that they find a reason to scan the brain, but I have had a more complicated road than others.