Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) - Advice

Hi, My friend (50 year old lady) has just had a subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). She was doing sit-ups when it happened. Luckily she was found very quickly and taken to hospital. She has had several scans and none have yet shown the cause of the bleed. She's in intense pain at the back of her head/neck. She's been on morphine for the pain. Her blood pressure has been increasing while in hospital and the ICU team have been managing that to get it under control. This happened on Thursday last week. Yesterday she had a really good day and today she has been in such pain and hardly able to speak. She's eating very little (apple compote) but getting alot of Nausea. The ICU won't let us take food into her right now. It's hard as we don't understand everything going on due to the language barrier. Tonight they have switched her from morphine to paracetamol and we're not 100% sure why. I would love to hear from others on this kind of anuerism. It would be good to understand the healing process a little better. Views on the length of time the headaches will take to go. She also has sensitivity to light. I'm supporting her husband. Our current view is that the pain is really the healing process kicking in and that their will be good days and bad days. She has another scan through her inner thigh tomorrow so hoping that that will give some more insights. Any thoughts to help in the support process would be much appreciated.

james ! i hope you get some good advice. Just want to outline some points, first everyone is different on different levels, i was a level 5--the worst and my family was told i probably would not survive and if i did i'd be in a nursing home the rest of my life, thankfully this was not the case and i can walk a little, therapy plateaued me about 3 yrs ago, I'm blind in the left side of both eyes so i don't drive, i hated the uncertainty of it all and heard a lot of ifs and maybees, hang in there its a long tough road so i will keep you in thoughts and prayers~~

Hi and again Welcome...This is a long journey...and it takes time, rest and patience for one to heal...You didn't say what type of Aneurysm...I have gathered it is one that ruptured and she has a bleed...~ Gotcha all in my thoughts ~ Colleen


It sounds as though there has been a rupture certainly....and the test she will be given thru the femoral artery (near the thiegh) is the Gold Standard in testing methods -- and should find out the source of the bleeding...(Cerebral Angiogram with contrast dye)...I'm surprised this test hadn't already been done honestly, seeing that this began on Thursday and it is now Tuesday...You noted something about there being a language barrier ...(?)

One reason your friend may have had a better day yesterday and a much worse day today could be largely due to a sentinal bleed into the brain (this will cause severe, debilitating pain and can affect cognitive ability greatly)....It could be the fact that her aneurysm is not yet 'burst', but is leaking blood into the brain...and is considered to be an emergency. This is something that will not go away on its own or be healed by ones body--but not knowing where the bleeding is coming from is like shooting in the dark, and I can't imagine how frustrating this has got to be for all involved!

The nausea is undoubtably due to the severe head /neckpain, which can be induced by such things as ruptures or leaks..The Angiogram will tell --I hope it will at least--a lot more detail on what is really happening with your friend, and will tell what measures are needed in order to FIX the problem...the Cerebral Angiogram is used in the coiling procedure of aneurysms, so perhaps that is what is on the table as a plan right now as far as treatment goes(?) but language barrier or not the family needs to be asking some questions in order to get some clarity as to whats actually going on--oh and yeah i can see how no outside food would be allowed considering your friends condition--plus pain of that magnitude usually over-rides any sort of meal enjoyment.

Be bold in this arena, I know its confusing as hell but not having any clues as to whats happening with this is again, shooting in the dark . start asking questions and get an interpreter if necessary..keep us updated as to what is found out...Peace, Janet