My sisters story and help

From the beginning, my sister Lucy is 23 and 21 weeks pregnant. 2 weeks ago (9th July) she was sat in bed with her partner when she felt a painful headache. She then started to vomit and that is when an ambulance was called. When the ambulance got there she was unconscious and took her last breath in the ambulance. She was resuscitated and then when she got to the hospital she had to be resuscitated again.
She was put into sedation after finding out she had suffered a brain aneurysm. The doctors kept her stable in the critical care unit until she was stable enough to move to a specialist neuro hospital (the Walton neuro centre, Liverpool, England) here they confirmed to us about the aneurysm and that it was serious due to her brain being ‘bathed in blood’. They also said it was on the right hand side of her brain.
We were told to go hour by hour for her life as it was a very high chance she would die. As you will all know myself and the family were distraught. It was such a shock. I didn’t realize these things happened unless you banged your head.
We went hour by hour and waited for her to get stronger. The baby was fine as it’s heartbeat was beating strong. We were then told she had caught phnuomea (however you spell it) they ended up giving her an operation through the groin…3 coils were the aneurysm happened to help prevent it from happening again.
They woke her up, I think Sunday for a few hours but she seemed very agitated and angry. Couldn’t focus or open her eyes. She couldn’t breath on her own so they put her back under sedation. On Tuesday they woke her up for a few hours and seemed much better. She moved all her limbs even though the left side was much weaker, just a small movement of her fingers and toes. She was able to nod yes and no although this was fee and far between and very feint movements. They put her back under sedation as she was struggling to breath with the chest infection.
They then woke her again on Thursday. Since then she has overcome her chest infection and she is fighting on. She has moved all limbs very well with good strength. She has sat in a chair and although she seems to have lost balance she has stood up with support according to the physio. She has also fed herself slightly when given a yogurt and also brushed her own teeth.
We call her a miracle because that’s what she is.
This is the bit we don’t understand…
We realise what has happened but not exactly what to expect. Her speech is fine, not slurred but it is very quiet although she does raise the tone every now and again. She is extremely confused, she sonetimes thinks she is in Cyprus or at home or in my home. She even said to me ‘lm going now’ then shouted her partners name as if to say she was leaving my house to go home. She doesn’t realize she is in hospital. She doesn’t know /remember what happened, when you tell her she is shocked but she forgets straight away. She sometimes forgets who her mum is or her partner or that she is even pregnant. She said the year was 2009. She said my daughter was 2 when she is 5. She seems to be living in the past, it’s like she has Alzheimer’s!
She says things like she went the gym in the morning and had a McDonald’s breakfast which she obviously never… All I want to know is…is this normal? What causes the confusion and short term memory loss? Is it something to do with the blood still being on the brain and the body has to soak this blood up first before she improves? Has anyone experienced confusion/memory loss like this before? Thanks very much for your help, I’m hoping it’ll help me feel.more positive.

Hi Andy.I had a brain aneurysm on 9 july just happened out of the heart stopped 4 times but I managed to survive.the confusion is normal because she is feeling the aftermath of a bleeding in the brain.after 5 years,I still can’t do hight impact exercise and do suffer from memory loss as well.all I can say that is that it takes time to build your strength back again,somedays are really tough but if u grit your teeth and bear the pain, she will be fine.I had to because I had no choice but your sister is lucky to have a brother and a partner who cares.that kind of support makes a lot of difference.I had to battle mine alone and it wasn’t easy.have faith.god bless

I suffered a subarachnoid hemorrhage (ruptured brain aneurysm) 7 years ago and still have short term memory loss and get confused sometimes when trying to put words together. Other than that, I am fine.

I am so sorry to hear about your sister. It sounds like she is very strong and I am hopeful that she will do well. It will take some time for her to get back to normal because the healing is a slow process. Don't give up hope and keep praying. I will keep your sister, baby and family in my prayers.

D'Nell Williamson

One sign is a huge headache before you have the aneurism burst. It’s good she is still alive. I know this might not help but there is a movie called Remember Sunday with Alexis Bledel. It might help you understand. It is a very good and informative movie. I have an aneurism and I had a stroke they can’t do surgery because it is in the middle of my brain and it would cause another stroke or death. I take it day at a time and realize every day I’m alive. I will pray for Lucy and the baby. It took me a while to heal but months later I’m working full time because I have to. Every day she will get better. Sometimes with an aneurism. The memory doesn’t change so just pray and be patient with her. Watch the movie it will help. GOD bless you all!

Hi, Andy. My husband ruptured in 2008. He had a lot of confusion like you describe at the beginning, also. The brain can heal, but it takes a lot of time. My husband has come a long way since 2008. He is almost back to his normal self. His personality is just a bit different--he is much more introverted. This could still change. A friend of mine has a friend who ruptured about 18 years ago. She finally got her personality back a few years ago. Be patient--healing takes time.

I was touched to read your sisters story.l had my anuresym aug 2012. My 2 year anniversary coming up. I was 44 and very fit and healthy. Complete shock . I had coiling through my groin also. I never lost consciousness throughout my bleed so your sisters recovery could be different to mine. I have vague memories of my time in hospital which was 4 weeks. I suffered a stroke post surgery , both bleeds were left sided. My memory was terrible at first especially short term. This is improving but not great. I still feel confused at times and struggle with too much information. I haven’t been able to go back to work as I feel too weak and drained all the time. I feel as though im in an arcade game , nothing seems real. The headaches and dizziness drive me crazy but there is a slight improvement. I truely hope this had helped and wish you all well.

I had a ruptured brain aneurysm at age 22 and the short term memory loss is common. From what I’ve read it has to do with the trauma that the brain received from the aneurysm itself. It could also be due to where the aneurysm was ruptured but if it’s due to the trauma her memory should improve. I was at the hospital for 3 weeks and I didn’t know what was going on and can’t remember but two days of that experience. When an aneurysm ruptures short term memory loss is normal and being that she is young she has a better chance at recovery. I am 25 now and I’ve had a great recovery so far and could still feel improvements. It’s a shock to the system but support does a world of difference for the patient. Ask her doctors to see what they say and maybe find out where the aneurysm was located and if the short term memory loss will go away, they should know that. Good luck and keep us updated, btw if you have any more questions the internet is a great resource or you could always ask questions on this site or shoot me a message. I had a tough surgery as well at a young age. Good luck to you and yours.

Hello. I am praying for the best for your sister and your whole family. I was lucky they found my by mistake and I had a coiling last October. I have trouble from nerve pain and my head hurts about all the time. But over all I. Am just takes time. Be patient and pray.

Its been almost a year now since my sisters aneurysm at first she was on life support for two days n she didn’t no she was in the hospital or what happened to her she couldn’t remember a lot of things I had to tell her about 10-15 times a day what happened n her gifts that she got .she thought she was just visiting someone at the hospital n she was saying she had supper with my dad which she didn’t. after about a week she was sitting up n started to remember things like her gifts n sitting up in a chair but she was doing a lot better .August 2 will be a year she still gets headaches n she repeats her self sometimes but other then that she is doing great now you wouldn’t even tell anything happened to her.It will take time , hope all goes well with your sister n your family

Two and a half yrs ago I had a ruptured aneurysm & an unruptured one was discovered. Both were coiled. The first 20 days after the rupture I don’t recall at all. I wasn’t in a coma. I talked to everyone that came in my room. I too, talked about crazy things. I told my other half that me and a former neighbor of ours had been to get facials that day. We were close but not going to facials close & we hadn’t seen each other in a couple of yrs. I also slide the tv remote around on my bed & told everyone that I had to get these cases done. ( I investigate claims ). All of the sudden on the21st day I started asking where I was etc… When the nurse said I had had a ruptured aneurysm in my brain,I slapped her on the leg & told her I did not. I also could not see because the blood had collected on my optic nerves. Two eye surgeries later I could see. I still have some short term memory loss and I developed cataracts. So 2 more eye surgeries later my vision is really good. Your sister is lucky to have a caring support system. Please keep us informed. We will all keep you and your sister in our thoughts and prayers.

I’m sorry to hear what happened to ur sister… Pressure
In the brain can cause many different symptoms .it takes time for the swelling to go down… My father had a ruptured anuerym and craniotomy… He was in a coma for weeks…it took months before he was able to walk talk and speak…he didn’t know where he was or who we were but after some time passed each day got better and better… The only permanent damage was his short term memory loss… That never recovered … He lived with post-it notes to remember all of the things he has to do for the rest of his life…also he was quick to anger… The docs said these two item were because the bleed cause some damage to that part of his brain… The frontal lobe… Trust me things will get better for all of you… Please be loving and patient with her even if she is not with you… Such a brain injury hurts her and the entire Family As you all know caring for someone with brain trams can be so scary and exhausting so take good care of each other… be grateful that she is still here to put ur arms around and get her immediate family members checked as aneurysms can be hereditary … I was checked after my fathers operation and they found that I have 3 anueryms that have been stented and coiled…I’m fine but the stent has some stenosis now and caused me a minor stroke last November…they went thru the artery in my leg to fix me too…it was during that time that my husband was diagnosed with GBM…Glioblastoma. …a ver aggressive brain cancer… He has since died this past June and I miss him terribly… I struggle thru each day wishing I could see him n hold him and talk to him… I tell you my life story because I want you to not be anxious with ur sisters ’ event but to be happy and loving with each other because life can be taken in a moment… Be patient my friend and cherish everyday together … Your sister is a miracle as you said…and ur entire family are in my prayers …GOD bless

I had a ruptured aneurysm December of 2012. My experience was very similar to what you described with your sister. I was 38 years old. It was the most painful thing I have ever experienced and was extremely confused and out of it for several weeks. Give her time and patience. Every is different but besides some short term memory issues and back pains I am 100% recovered. The confusion and memory issues get better over time. It took 6 months for me to get back to normal. Playing memory games with my 3 year old seemed to help. I’m sorry this happened to your family. The pregnancy adds so much more to the issue I know nothing about. Wishing you the best.

Andy, I had a ruptyre in 2007, my family was told to say their goodbye’s. 7 years later and you would never know this happened to me. My remaining issue is some balance problems. When I ruptured I was in ICU for the first week or two. I couldn’t see for a month due to the blood behind my retina’s which ended up being absorbed by my body and my vision greatly improved. I couldn’t remember anything for more than a minute or so at first my husband said. Slowly, that improved. I was in the hospital 28 days then home for outpatient rehab. My aneurysm was coiled and I also had to get a shunt to control the pressure in my brain. It was a very, very long recovery. But I recovered, I drive, work and have no restrictions now. My point is, don’t give up, help her fight her way through and take one day at a time. With a strong will and lits of support she can recover. Good luck!

This is one of the most frustrating aspects of recovery. There are so many variables and the damage done to the brain so unique to each individual. And then the way the brain heals is totally unpredictable. Each survivor creates their own "normal" over time. I am thankful my partner is doing better and up and about, but I have given up waiting for any particular improvement. We do it moment by moment and continue doing whatever seems to take us in the direction of health and happiness. Thanks for sharing your experience. Nice to know we are not alone! BIG HUGS!

My story is very similar though my stroke happened a few months after my baby was born. I was confused for a month or more and still didn’t understand everything that had happened to me until 4 months later even though my husband would explain it to me over and over. I believe some of it has to do with all of the meds they put you on too. I pray each day gets better.

Keeping your sister & your families in our prayers!!

Your sister is amazing and has a lot to work through. I said a prayer. It takes time.

My mom is going through all this right now. Her aneurism ruptured just last week. She is just starting to wake up. My family has all the same questions. My moms nurses in the ICU are wonderful resources of information! I researched until I was exhausted. It helped tremendously! Prayers with you and your family.

I went through something like that also and was told not to look at recovery in days or weeks it takes months and years. It’s almost been 6 yrs now and some problems linger but a real big change from 6 yrs ago

My wife suffered a brain aneurysm in December of 2011. She was in the hospital seven weeks, the last three weeks being in acute rehab because she had lost ability to do virtually everything. She does not remember at least the first month of being in hospital nor the rupture itself. It was very odd, but she would talk to everyone who came to see her, once she could talk again, make strange comments, and today she has no memory that they ever came to see her. Hers was treated with coiling; at six months she received a bit more coiling and a stent. At eighteen months the doctor said the repair was perfect. She is doing very well and says herself that she might think she had not had an aneurysm except that her left leg is slow. She also has less control over her emotions. But I am thankful she is here. Even though life is different than before, it is good, and I really don't remember how it was before. She drives and does most everything anyone can do.