Brain Aneurysm Support Community

My Mother Recently had an Aneurysm

Hello Everyone:

Not sure if this is where I can introduce myself to everyone in the group but here it goes. My name is Brenda and my mother had an aneurysm on November 24, 2015. She's currently in a rehabilitation facility. The biggest hurdles we are trying to deal with is her memory. Her short term memory seems to be shot and she hallucinates sometimes. We aren't sure if it's the seizure medication or just the after effects of having an aneurysm. I would love to hear if this is normal and if this passes. Also if anyone knows of any resources I could use to help my mother get back to normal that would be great. Thank you!

FYI: my mom is 66 years old and was extremely active. We live in South Florida. She never smoked or drank. Never was hospitalized. This aneurysm was the first time she has ever been hospitalized. She also can use her hands and legs. She is now getting therapy to walk unassisted again since she was hospitalized for 3 weeks.

Hi Brenda and welcome!

I would look into the medication she is taking - I hallucinated on dexamethasone and was immediately taken off and IV drip increased to flush it out. See if any of your mom’s have side effects of hallucination. Look at all the side effects, not just the common ones.

The other thing I have learned first from my Neurosurgeon and then observation, is that the anesthesia really plays havoc on our brains and this takes time, proper diet and fluid intake to get over.

As for short term memory, she may just need rest and a lot of it. She is only a few weeks out. Please give both of you time. When she is further out, she might be ready to do something like Lumosity. Things that helped me was having things written down where I could read them, sticky notes, my phone. Also music is great therapy and reading helped. I didn’t know all the words I read so while I was in the hospital, the RN’s, med student, Dr’s, janitors, cafeteria delivery service, all helped me in getting my language back by defining the words in simple language. At home, I use family, friends, dictionary…

Good luck!

Thank you so much! I will look into the meds and I will make sure to incorporate your suggestions. I truly appreciate you taking time out to respond to my question. I will be sure to keep the group updated!

Brenda

Hi Brenda, good to hear your Mom is doing well. I remember hallucinating a bit after surgery but as my brain got stronger, and I eliminated pain meds, it got better. If you read around the boards here you'll notice short term memory loss is common. I'm much better now (two years post surgery) but if I get tired I start slurring and forget words and things. What helped immensely was writing myself notes or agendas as simple as put clothes in dryer, pull clothes out of dryer, close dryer (heehee). It also helps to play games. I tried word search but it was pretty hard and overwhelmed my brain until months later. My sister started playing a game with me called Doodle Dice and it sounds goofy but it helped alot. Dice has images you arrange to match cards. First game took me forever but my family was so patient. Writing here helped alot too. I couldn't handle noise or images so stores, tv, music was tough. But little by little as I reintroduced myself into the world it got better. Lots of rest is crucial. You listen to your body. If you ignore it, you'll know! Baby steps. Lots of patience. LOTS!


Thank you for taking time to respond. I’m glad that you are thriving and I will definitely listen to what you’ve suggested. I’m learning that patience is required to get through this. I’m so grateful for this community. I truly appreciate your suggestions and encouraging words!

Hey no problem! If you ever want to ask or vent feel free to post on these Boards because there are awesome people. Or feel free to friend me as I'm not always on the site but do get alerted to my emails.

Brenda...thank you for your intro here... and, for sharing. I regret for you, all that your mother and you/family/friends are experiencing...

Brenda, I have attempted to encourage research online, and some here at this BAF site...However, there is limited data on this site on the anatomy/structure and physiology of it all...

When we talk memory (well, once we can sort of remember it!)...is that it is the hippocampus (hippocampal area) of the temporal lobe...at the lower central area of our brain... It somehow relates to many (or all) portions of memory...tho the memory "storage" areas vary...(too complicated for me to type) from the short-term...to long-term...and, variances in language and in math and and and..

Moltroub, a support/greeter (proper term?) provided a "recovery" brochure from a facility in FL...and, it is posted as Brain Basics in the "Resource" category...which may be helpful.

In searching online: use the name of structure...anatomy and physiology (e.g. basilar artery anatomy and physiology) to better understand it/see it...

To be as open and upfront as possible, we all have from same/perfection of recovery to stumbling, limited, long-term recovery. Have they given you any indication of what to expect? what did the hospital put on the discharge record?

Wish we could all give easy info...it is not at all...because we are not all the same ...

Hope you will keep us updated...prayers for your mother's recovery...and, for yours, too...as learning of aneurysms of those close to us is like the other major diseases...ischemic stroke, cancers, heart and whatever else...as they can all be unknown, unexpected and shocking on arrival... just as aneurysms are..