Unruptured aneurysm and coiling...and other questions. : )

Hello all. My name is Stacie and my husband Randy was diagnosed with an 11mm unruptured aneurysm in the carotid artery on August 26th. He is 34. He suffered a grand mal seizure while at work on the 17th of August and through subsequent testing the aneurysm was discovered. He is scheduled to have the coiling done on Monday Sept. 20...just 6 days away.

My first question is has anyone else experienced seizure activity with an unruptured aneurysm? The neuro isn't sure if they are related. My husband has experienced "spells" for about 1 1/2 years where he would feel numb, tingly, lightheaded; his vision and hearing were also impacted. These spells would last approx. 1 minute. Right before the grand mal he was experiencing one of these episodes. The first neuro he saw in the ER was pretty confident these were partial seizures that became generalized. He is now on Keppra. I have to think the aneurysm and seizures are somehow related but I'm not sure.

We're unsure what to expect during recovery from the coiling. His boss is pushing him to give him a time frame to return to work and we have no idea what to tell him. He works in IT as a network engineer and consultant. His work is not so much physically demanding as it is mentally. How long might it take before he can resume normal activity and what side effects are most common?

Thank you for any info and advice you can give. This has been an incredibly difficult time for us. We have 4 children ages 14, 11, 6, and 4 so it has added alot of stress and worry. Again, thanks for listening


Stacie, This is a difficult time for you and your family and I wish I could give you some answers. I am unable to do so because I had my annies clipped and I know recovery is longer for the clippings. If you go to http://www.bafound.org/treatment-options-2 you should find your answers. I will keep you and your family in my prayers. Take care and God Bless you all!

You were blessed that Randy was diagnosed before rupture.
I know that seizures have potential after rupture and/or treatment…a number are given anti-seizure med for a peirod of time. Unfortuantely, I was only given an EEG after my first emergency and my aneurysm was not detected/diagosed from that EEG.
You are blessed that sufficient testing was done. Yes, I think a lot of symptoms can carry on for a period of time, in my opinion/experience…even tho it is well publicized that there are no symptoms before a black-out and/or massive headache.
You will be in my prayers for successful results; and, that you have family/friends to give you much love and support.

Hi Stacie,
My name is Stephanie. I have had seizures ever since i was 17.
i am 42 now. As time went on they have gotten smaller and smaller. Yes I have had Grand Mal seizures before, but that was when i first started having seizures.
Now a days , the type i have only last for 5 or 10 seconds…I just look as if I am day dreaming. once i snap out of the seizure, I have no rememberance of it and i feel like i am lost or confused as to where I am at…or what I am doing, etc…
I was working at my desk one day and all of a sudden ,out of nowhere…I started to hear this really loud beating…thumping noise in my head…it sounded like a pulse. It didn’t hurt, and I had a little headache. My doctor sent me to have an MRI done. that is how my aneurysm was found.
My doctor then referred me to a neurolgist, he was the one who operated on me.
The new doctor told me about a new method named ONYX that is being used to fill aneurysms.
From my understanding , Onyx is a liquid, that the doctor will insert into the bubbled up area (aneurysm) and once its there it will automatically start to harden up. The doctor went through a main artery at the top of my right leg ,followed it up all through my body, up into my neck, and then the brain. It did not hurt at all. I had to stay in ICU for about 3 or 4 days after, but i am doing just fine and my life is back to normal.
I would advise to to ask your doctor about Onyx. My doctor said that they would know right then and there as they apply it into my aneurysm if my body would accept or not…if it wouldn’t of ,my dr. would of used the coiling method.
I have a slight memory loss…but I have had that for the most part of my life…so the seizures is more in likely the fault.

Sorry to read about your husband. I can only imagine how difficult this time is for him, for you and your family.

I think there’s one thing you might want to get used to, and that’s … uncertainty. There are going to be many things that you will assume will have answers but in reality have only estimates and educated guesses.

Regarding your husband’s dizzy spells etc, my wife had much of the same issues, and she had an unruptured aneurysm that was about the same size. When hers was fixed in June by way of an open craniotomy and complete excision of the aneurysm, the surgeon discovered that although it had not ruptured, there was evidence of bleeding. He could only suggest that maybe this was the source of some of the headaches and dizziness.

Side effects she experienced-- balance issues early on; she also got fatigued quickly, especially mentally. We heard depression was common, but my wife didn’t have any depression problems, in part because we made a point of her getting outside for a short walk every day, as opposed to being cooped up in our bedroom all day and night.

Best of luck

Thank you all for your words of advice, support, and encouragement. Our family has has its share of hard times; our 11 year old was born 2 months premature with a major heart defect and unfortunately is now severely disabled as a result of complications during his surgery at 3 months old. We always seem to make the best of a situation and try to be as optimistic as possible, although some days that’s easier said than done. : )

I will be sure to update after his coiling on Monday. Thank you all again.


Thank you for sharing your story. We will all be praying for all of you during this diffcult time. There are no easy answers. We all share the annie stories and we also share a great faith and are optimistic. Keep reading the stories, the more knowledge you gain the more confident and prepared you will be. I am 3 weeks post-op clipping x2, making it 3 total. I had 1 rupture 5 years ago, found the 2nd on f/u angio and found the 3rd while clipping the 2nd. I had a grand-mal seizure after my rupture which was caused by the bleed. Since then I have had no seizures, just headaches and fatigue. I am now on Keppra also. Many prayers coming your way! Keep us up to date. :slight_smile:

Hi Stacie, Please make sure you have FMLA forms,Family Medical Leave Act , if you don’t know what that is just
go to the dept of labor sight , get info for FMLA and get the forms, have your doctor/ surgeon fill them out , make copies and get one copy to the boss,the surgeon will state on the forms all the info that the boss needs about your husband returning to work, and if other surgeries will be needed,best of luck with everything , keeping you all in my prayers, Julie

Sorry to hear of your aneurism discovery but happy to hear about catching it before rupture. My aneurism same size and it did rupture so I doubt the time frame it took to get past that would be of any use to you.

What I can tell you that my aneurism has taken numerous procedures (coilings) to finish and it’s not done yet. Everyone is different and I am course am not a Dr. but I can share my experience over 5 coiling procedures I have had done. First things first everyone seems to be different but after all my procedures I was able to go back to work in just two days sometimes a few days. In fact after one of the procedures I went straight to office to sign some things that only I could do. My work is also not physically challenging so that helped because you are trying to protect a incision in your groin that they don’t stitch. The only restriction they gave me was to take it easy for a few days and avoid lifting anything. Perhaps the best advice is “listen to your body”. If your feeling back 100% in a few days then go back. If your really being pressed I expect advising a week is fine barring any complications. Perhaps then if your ok in a few days you go back early. Please remember this is only my experience and I have heard of people that feel a week is not enough. BTW I’m 53 so still relatively young and perhaps that helped me out. One last thing - try not to worry about the coiling. If they go the way of mine having a tooth pulled is more of a problem for me. Your Dr. can surely offer you some advice as well. Up here in Canada they go over things like your asking during the pre-op. Not sure if they preops in US (assuming your from US)

To Sum It All Up
I don’t want to keep having all these coiling but the procedure itself is a walk in the park on a beautiful day compared to clipping. Trust me - if it ruptures you will be happy to be unhappy cause the alternative is far worse.

Hope this helps - Shoot, just realized you asked some things about seizures. I never experienced any small or large seizures until around the 3rd coiling. I then did suffer a seizure that the giant heads felt was a result of the rupture not any of the coilings. Something else you might be wondering is why so many coilings. My coils continue to compact down into the aneurism and blood has even managed to sneak behind them. We kept adding more coils at each procedure but follow up always showed more blood sneaking in. This many coilings are not common but sometimes a second procedure is required. What they did to me with the last procedure is place a stent and next procedure the hope is that the stent will help prevent the coils from compacting down and help hold coils in place. When I asked why they did not do that in the first place they explained that if they can get away without it then it’s one less thing they have to do that could go wrong. I’ll shutup now after this book…

How is he doing? It takes time, even after, mine ruptured and was extremely lucky to have survived and coiled.

Fatigue after the rupture, its hard on the body and mind. I had a basilar arterial Annie, the worst but I’m alive. Last angiogram showed slight compaction, not enough to put a coil in. I’ve been experiencing depression which is naturals. I also lost both my parents the last two years. My recovery is still on going, I have no deficits, but i do have lapses in memory here and there which I didn’t use to. I try and not worry about it, but i guess that’s what the forum is for…to just talk.
God bless u all.