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Life after you or a loved one experiences a brain aneurysm may be different, but sharing your connection can provide hope to many others navigating recovery. We encourage you to share your journey, advice, and any other messages of support below.


Lisa Foundation

Shared Stories of Brain Aneurysms

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247 entries.
Jacinta Jones Jacinta Jones from Oceanside, CA wrote on October 12, 2022 at 6:13 pm
On 8/14/22, I went to bed and was awoken with a snap at the back of my head. I immediately started vomiting, my neck was stiff, I did not have a thunderclap headache. My vision is blurred without my corrective lens but I did not have them near me at that point. I slept on and off and the next morning I went to reach for my phone/glasses and that is when I knew something was very wrong as I had double vision with the glasses on. I went to the ER and was immediately rushed back for a CT. The results, a Subarachnoid Hemorrhage. I was airlifted to UCSD Neuro Center where a Cerebral Angiogram was performed. Doctors could not see an aneurysm and believed a vein ruptured. They were concerned about a rebleed and vasospams. I was put on nimopidine and remained in Neuro ICU for eight days. An MRA and a second CT Angiogram were conducted and I was cleared with a follow up MRA in six months. I have some pressure two months after and it is getting progressively better each day. I am blessed and beyond grateful for the second chance at life. I am 59 years old and in the best health so it was a shock for everyone when I had the brain hemorrhage. My mother died of an intracerebral hemorrhage at 66. Awareness of sudden onset of systems (SOS) is critical to survival.
Dena Baker Dena Baker from Thorndale wrote on September 19, 2022 at 6:17 pm
I went on the birth control pill 2 -3 months before the big event. I was 40 years old when it happened. Husband and I were having an "intimate" afternoon when I experienced a sudden, uncomfortable headache. I lived with it for several days then went to the doctor. She missed the diagnosis and sent me home with pain pills. The next day I passed out. Upon waking up, the headache was excruciating. I couldn't talk and could hardly move. The emergency room doctor found blood in my spinal fluid, so the aneurysm had burst (perhaps for the second time). The surgeon clipped it but unfortunately the angiogram showed a second (mirror image) aneurysm. I was told to pick a date within 6 months of the first surgery. I went in to have it clipped 3 months later. The surgeon said it was about to burst! So telling me to pick the date was bad advice. My recovery took a few months. I still suspect the birth control pill may have been the cause (I have no family history of aneurysms). A nurse told me back in 1993 that there were studies being done on that subject. It's been 30 years since the surgeries and I still have some memory issues. Other than that, I've lived a normal life.
Ron Ron from Atlanta wrote on September 18, 2022 at 11:36 pm
Short story compared to to other but father had an aneurysm while out working in the yard. He was gone in the next few hours. Nothing they could do due to the extensive damage. Donate what you can and understand the symptoms so you can be prepared if something happens to you, family or loved ones. Miss him always. Appreciate Lisa Foundation and their efforts to spread the word and educate.
Diana Diana from Pueblo wrote on September 18, 2022 at 10:28 pm
For years I had experienced migraine headaches. I had what I thought was an extremely bad one and had to call my son to take me to the er. What I thought was a migraine ended up being an aneurism. I had to be transported by helicopter to another hospital in my state for further care. After examination and testing it ended up that mine was brought on because I ended up being diagnosed with an auto immune disease. I do not remember anything, not even that I had called my son, perhaps even anything from that day. I have no memory of my time in the hospitals, my family being with me or even almost dying. Seeing a picture of me on a ventilator is hard to see, but it reminds me of what I have made it through. At one point the drs had to put me in a dr. induced coma so my brain could catch up with my body and all that had happened. My family was all called in since they did not know if I would survive. All this happened in February of 2007. There are still good and bad days, BUT through continued medical care of my cns vasculitis and prayers I am still here and thankful for every day. Because of the aneurism and a stroke later I do have bad memory and balance issues, I am always taking pictures simply because of the memory issues. For the most part I am doing, just missing the parts of my life I can no longer do.
Russell Dennis Phelps Russell Dennis Phelps from Myrtle Beach wrote on September 18, 2022 at 8:59 pm
I was 39 and living alone when I had a headache that felt like when you eat ice cream to fast that would not go away and later started to vomit. I went to emergency room which could not help me. I went to my family doctor who sent me straight to the hospital where I went through surgery. Came out good and I am now 69. One good thing that was good I married my nurse and have been married for 30 years
Phyllis Cornish Phyllis Cornish from MD - Baltimore wrote on August 17, 2022 at 7:41 pm
Survived Brain Aneurysms in 2009
Raquel Charter Raquel Charter from Queens wrote on August 14, 2022 at 7:15 pm
July 2021 I was completing physical therapy for a knee injury. I was hungry and purchased a yogurt. When I arrived home, I began vomiting consistently and thought well maybe the yogurt was rancid. I suffered from migraines for nearly my entire adult life so thought nothing of it when I had a severe migraine on the left side of the brain. The difference was the vomiting and the piercing pain behind my left eye. My husband came home and at this point both symptoms intensified. We went to our local hospital and by the grace of God there was a neurologist standing behind the triage nurse. One look and she felt I had a blood clot. I was rushed in to the emergency room, placed on blood thinners and told I would I need a CAT-Scan. Nothing registered. I was not scared nor terrified. I simply thought I would be home in a couple of hours. The scan confirmed her fear and I was then placed in the 6th floor ward – less than 2 hours later would cold stroke on the left side of my face – eyelid closed. Still was not scared because I could not register what was going on. I was informed I would be transferred to Northwell Hospital in Manhasset. When I arrived, I was given an MRI and immediately rushed to surgery. Again, was calm until I saw myself after the surgery and my body looked like a truck had run over me. The bruising and the reality that I had nearly died sunk in. I saw my husband and son and felt an enormous guilt because this had happened to me. It shouldn’t have happened to me. I had no indicators, no risk factors – now came the why? One year later and after 5 surgeries, the left eyelid lifted up on its own. I still have migraines. Aneurysm, treated by 2 coils inserted, is GONE!!! Went back to teaching (my 25th year). I thank my family, the incredible nurses and doctors and the staff at Northwell who helped me heal.
Brian T Davis Brian T Davis from Horicon wrote on August 11, 2022 at 12:23 pm
On February 14th 2022 my son my girlfriend and his girlfriend went to the movies we had a good time and then I drove us all home at 9:15pm I opened the house door for everyone and I went into a seizure my girlfriend is a er nurse and began cpr and called 911 my breathing was weak and the emt and police came they gave me Narcan because they really didn’t know anything (note I never did drugs) I came around and I told everyone I’m just tired but I couldn’t move or lift my legs , at this time my girlfriend was telling them I had a brain bleed by how I was acting they called the hospital and flight for life was called . I was rushed to the hospital and I had the most painful painful headache . I was flighted immediately after arriving to the hospital. Was flown to Madison Wi and they did act scan with contrast and they found a major ruptured aneurysm . I went through surgery but there was complications and they almost lost me twice surgery was 6.5hours . When I woke up I didn’t remember anything I was in icu for 13 days . They installed a tube in my head to help drainage of fluids but after they tried to close off the tube I would get major headaches. The neurosurgeon said we need to install a shunt I was freaking out because I had a very iffy chance of coming out of this. I went through the second surgery and the shunt was installed. I woke up very weak but there was no pain anymore. I have 1 more aneurysm they need to clip or coil but not sure on what they are doing I have a angiogram September 15 2022 that will determine what type of surgery I need. It’s been almost 6 months and I’m doing pretty good I’m back to work and at times I struggle because my energy level is not the same but I push myself. I’m only 49 , when I got home my family was awesome they put railings up in my house because I was using a cane for 2 weeks for walking I’m a fighter and I push myself the drs told me I’m a walking miracle because of the size of bleed I had. I’m very thankful my girlfriend was there and saved my life . My memory is kind of mixed up but I’m working on that. Life is alittle different after the ruptured aneurysm but I stay positive and try to be strong my thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who has delt with this.. Brian
Rosario Ramírez Rosario Ramírez from Hawthorne wrote on June 9, 2022 at 8:48 am
I was 28 years old (2005)working at an orthopedic surgeons office. I was the manager at the time and I was going through a break up with my kids father. My coworker asked me if I was feeling ok because I seemed distant. I told her I felt kinda off and half of my face felt numb. She spoke to my boss and he insisted I go get an MRI across the building where we would send all of our patients. They did the MRI of my brain and within 2 hours they had sent the report over to my boss where he sat me down and said I had brain aneurysm and needed to go see my primary doctor asap ! I started crying and he asked me if o knew what that was?, I told him no , but he looked very worried… I did just that and my primary doctor was not ok with me having surgery!! She said that there was millions of people walking around with aneurisms and they were doing fine! I insisted on being referred to a Neurosurgeon and 1 week later I contacted my insurance because my doctors office was not doing anything about it! Two weeks later I was having Endo-vascular surgery. I had a 9mm aneurysm coiled and unfortunately had a stroke right after while I was in the ICU department. It took me 3 weeks to recover from it and was back at work . I’m doing Fine and enjoying life!! I am 47 years old now. And still working in the medical field. I raised my 3 daughters as a single mother. My ex cheated on me while I was recovering with someone very close to our family. He did me a favor.
Rose M. Kreidt Rose M. Kreidt from RIDGECREST wrote on June 1, 2022 at 7:47 am
 I am a survivor of an attack on my person which also resulted in a head injury, severe PTSD and this event was closely followed by a brain aneurysm.  In August 2016, I was attacked in my home and sustained a frontal lobe concussion which caused seizures and severe headaches.  Then in 2018, I had a massive headache and was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm. The aneurysm was the size of a small pea but before the surgery occurred, it had turned into an oval shape with one end opening and some blood was leaking out. I was given a stent in the neck to open a vein and then another stent by the aneurysm.  Coiling was a 10-hour surgery during which I stopped breathing and they had to jump start my heart.     Ongoing symptoms  Since the surgery, I have severe fatigue, I am super emotional, it takes me longer to process things, and sometimes my speech is jumbled up. Every year I get an MRA of the brain to look for brain aneurysms. Sometimes when I get headaches and when they occur, I am fearful it might be another aneurysm. My neurosurgeon makes me log the headaches and if I feel weird, I was told to go to the Emergency Room and have them airlift me back UCLA Hospital in Los Angeles as I live 4 hours away. My most recent MRA shows white spots on my frontal lobe where the first head injury occurred and it also shows decreased blood flow into the brain.  I will see my neurosurgeon soon so he can explain what we are going to do about this issue.      What’s been successful during my recovery  The most helpful things throughout my brain injury recoveries included keeping journals for my neurosurgeon to track the headaches or any pain in regards to my head, letting myself feel the pain in regards to my attack in 2016 and really talking about it without holding back which puts the power back into my own hands.  I still have a long way to go to recover fully from my PTSD, but providing my story to Laura Foundation has been a release of the negative, allowing me to turn it into a positive.    What advice would you give others  The advice I would give to others is to find a doctor that takes the time to explain the MRA results, shows you what everything is on the Brain Scan, explains the surgery, and who explains the long-term side effects of having a frontal lobe concussion, brain aneurysm, or any other brain injury recovery. Understanding my injuries has been tremendously helpful for me throughout my ongoing recovery.     
Laura Camp Laura Camp from Brazil wrote on May 13, 2022 at 8:19 am
Well that feeling that went from toes the pressure through my body my neck broke again I felt it pop,the headache was bad for days ...I woke couple days before with just black I was freaking blind and thought this spinal cord is killing me slowly..after 18 years from first break the headache's the doctors always says your blood pressure is always high when you get here white coat crap...well he knew my family history and treated my mom and was on high blood pressure crap and severe diabetes and I've struggled with this crap and suddenly woke up I can't see next that pressure through my body my neck popped I can't hear them the Pop in my head...I said Kevin it's bad in my brain..I had already had been to the ER. For my head aches..well said it was my neck I went to another hospital the waiting was unreal I left went home to bed I didn't know then I guess I said we got to hospital I don't remember just them doing blood and bits then don't remember cat scan but remember him saying Laura " you have ,,2 brain bleedings we got helicopter come to get you and don't remember it...just waking up thinking I been there for days., and shocked I had hemorage and aneurysm..and an stroke and eye stroke
My Bacigalupo My Bacigalupo from Minneapolis wrote on April 25, 2022 at 1:55 am
Hello, My name is Megan! I survived a ruptured brain hemorrhage! Here is my story! Enjoy!
JoAnn JoAnn from Chicago wrote on April 7, 2022 at 5:24 am
In 2018 I suffered a terrible headache on the left side of my head only. After a couple of hours I went to Urgent care. My headache was a little less but still quite painful with pain behind my right eye. The doctor that examined me gave me an IV with anti inflammatory meds and the headache subsided. He felt I had shingles without the rash since it was clearly only one sided and had me get a plain CT scan a week later. The CT scan was clear. A few months later in summer of 2019 I woke up with a terrible headache and vomiting. Trying to get to the bathroom I was drifting sideways when I walked. I looked in the mirror and did all the things they say to rule out stroke. I arched both eyebrows, stuck out my tongue and moved it side to side etc. Everything seemed ok except my left arm seemed to be moving too fast when I reached for something. I would over reach or under reach the object. I finally picked up a glass of water with that arm but when I brought to my mouth to drink it I misjudged the distance and wound up hitting my face with the glass. Little did I know these were signs of a cerebellar stroke. My headache subsided and except for a little clumsiness in the fingers of my left hand I felt better but went to my family doctor the next day. My family doctor felt a stroke was a slim possibility so she wanted me to see a neurologist. I called the neurologist she referred me to and even though I told them my doctor thought I might have had a TIA or stroke they said they couldn’t see me for six weeks. Since I felt better I waited for my appointment. Six weeks later I saw the neurologist. I told her what happened. She checked me and said I had mild deficits that indicated a cerebellar stroke. She said they are often missed because the deficits are on the same side as the headache and the facial tests you do are usually normal. I had an MRA which showed a 7.5 x 6mm aneurysm of the PICA artery. That’s the posterior inferior cerebellar artery which is a quite rare location for an aneurysm. I had a Pipeline stent put in in September of 2019 which successfully closed the aneurysm. It was too wide for coiling. I’m very lucky nothing happened during the almost two month delay from family doctor to neurologist visit to MRA scan and finally aneurysm closure. I’m writing this so people know that not all TIA /stroke symptoms are classic. Involvement of the cerebellar area can present differently and can be missed even in an emergency room. I feel very fortunate mine was found and closed with the Pipeline stent.
Michelle Venning Michelle Venning from New York wrote on February 18, 2022 at 11:48 pm
I am a survivor since June, 2013 when I was getting ready for bed for the evening but instead of going to sleep I experienced the worst headache of my life. I screamed, cried and literary felt helpless, I look at my daughter who was only 9 years old then and told her I loved her but mommy is not well. Her father tried to help but he didn't know what to do as a 911 operator I called my for help telling the dispatcher "please help I am going to die because I can not feel my right side and I am in great pain with headaches. She said Michelle I am hear for you and everything will be fine, help is on the way. Moving forward surgery was performed as the surgeon found three Aneurysms that was repaired with one rupture every now and then I experience headaches but otherwise life goes on. I am still working, I received 3 college degrees and a mentor for the brain Aneurysm foundation where as I motivate others who experience this aliment to stay strong and take one day at a time. most importantly I let them know it is not their fault this happen to them and how to slowly get back to life. Survivors must remember they are here for a reason, they fought back. As for those who lost the battle you are not forgotten and will always remain in our hearts like Lisa and those who left us. We are here to help those cope with losing those who went on to glory from losing the battle regarding the Brain Aneurysms. God bless you and thank you for creating this foundation. Michelle
Dr mukesh goel Dr mukesh goel from St augustine Florida wrote on January 31, 2022 at 1:18 am
I was recently found to have asymptomatic brain aneurysm on a MRI ordered for nonspecific Tinnitis. It was a 5 mm wide neck ACOM aneurysm with a daughter sac, all the features in an aneurysm that make it likely to rupture. Best option was open brain surgery to do clipping. It was done 3 weeks ago with no significant complications. I was very lucky to have found it on MRI scan.
Kim Cantrell Kim Cantrell from Bossier City wrote on December 18, 2021 at 7:40 pm
Right after midnight on January 16, 2017, my life took a dramatic turn. I had stayed up late, was getting ready for bed. I was turning lights off in the house and on on the porch. I became dizzy, dizzy like nothing I had ever experienced before. I sat down on the edge of my bed, and the WHOL hit, all over my head. I laid down and closed my eyes, hoping the pain would go away and the world would stop spinning. My neck became stiff. I thought I had meningitis at that point. I called my Mom and told her I need to go to the ER. She asked what was wrong, I said I have no idea. We arrived at the ER, my blood pressure was 212/192. I was sedated immediately and sent to CT. They transferred me to the University Medial Center at 5:30 AM. It is the trauma center in town. I had clips put in that evening. I am so blessed! I was told I would be in ICU two weeks and on the floor two weeks. I was moved to the floor after eight days. The following day, my surgeon came in and said I was a walking, talking miracle and if I could walk around the nurses station, I could go home. I told him I’d be right back. It was still a long recovery but I will be at the 5 year mark next month!
Linda Linda from Raleigh wrote on November 6, 2021 at 12:43 pm
After birth of my 3rd child, I fainted. As I read these stories, Marcie's was familiar. After coming to, I had a horrific headache, and a wonderful nurse. She called the OB and said something's wrong. She had given me as much pain meds as possible and I was still severely in pain. Elevated blood pressure, low body temp, the works. After an MRI, a neurosurgeon found that I had a pituitary adenoma and and anuerysm leaking. I had emergency brain surgery. Craniotomy and a metal clip later, I was better, but before discharge started having seizures. My baby was discharged. I only had her lie on me, because I never had the strength to actually hold her. Once my seizures were managed, I was discharged, but spent months in and out of the hospital due to adrenal insufficiency, and other hormonal inefficiencies from not having a pituitary gland. I suffered a stroke 10 years later and had to learn to walk, talk, eat, but through physical, speech and occupational therapy everything came together over time. As of 2017, I was found to have an aneurysm on the left and right side of my brain and received coils. You lose yourself. Every illness adventure feels as though it takes your brain time to come ' back.' You are there, but have to truly focus and think on each task. Then you are just back. Everything is easy, no thought. I was 27 when I had my original surgery, and spent years only wanting to be me again. Now I embrace the me that I am. When memories are talked about that I don't remember, I say I don't remember. I have suffered amnesia due to a fever. Lost so many memories, but some things came back. Patient, stress free ( lol, I no) and love for yourself, seems to work now. It's like living 2 lives. Before and after.
Matthew Harrington Matthew Harrington from Venice wrote on September 27, 2021 at 5:40 pm
When I was 10 years old I had a brain aneurysm on the playground at school!
Paul Paul from Lynchburg wrote on September 26, 2021 at 8:11 pm
My name is Paul. I am married, a father, an author, and a brain aneurysm rupture survivor. I wrote "Malformation: when bad things happen to the right kind of people". In it I detail my journey dealing with multiple AVM ruptures in 2000, 2010, and 2019. I would love to connect with your organization to help drive awareness of brain aneurysms. I can be reached at,, or (919) 200-0110 Thank you for driving up awareness!
Tricia Tricia from Weatminster wrote on September 17, 2021 at 11:30 pm
Almost 10 years ago i was in a really bad car accident and had a brain anurism behind my right eye, along with other major injuries,My eye was bulging out of my head. I med flighted and stayed in the hospital 2 months. I had 3 brain surgies (amongst others). Coiling was done but the bleeding wouldnt stop. They did more coiling & the third time my surgey was supposed to be 3 hours & turned into 8. They tried putting a stent in & then a balloon. Didnt work so they shut down the coratid artery. I had a low survival rate with each surgey. Now i can see out of my right eye (shouldnt be able too). I do get headaches & double vision. But i survived somehow.

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The Lisa Foundation, a 501 (c)(3), is the leading private funder of Brain Aneurysm initiatives that directly or indirectly support awareness, education, research, and survivor support in the U.S.

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To foster a national dialogue and understanding around Brain Aneurysms and drive better patient outcomes through pioneering education, research, and support.

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