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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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219 entries.
Marina Mills Marina Mills from Redondo Beach California wrote on October 9, 2018 at 3:01 am:
I had bilateral aneurysm this year and is has I have surgery. coil both of them on July 12 2018. I lost my 72 years old mom on June 2002” as a result of a ruptured brain aneurysm My sister never wake up from aneurysm In 2010 Thank you for your faoundation to help awerness.
Bethann M Ryan Bethann M Ryan from Valdosta wrote on October 4, 2018 at 10:28 pm:
Ok third time's the charm. So I had my aneurysm in 2005. It all started normally I had been suffering migraine headaches after at mva in 1988. I had recently married and was at the clinic on base (my husband is military) for a normal check up. The PA suggested I have an MRI which I did only to find out the next day that I had a 4cm aneurysm at the junction of my left optimistic artery and corerad artery, my surgery was not long after, but I had been given the best neurosurgeon in the southeast, at MCG in Augusta Ga. I'm still alive not only to the Lord but to all those He put in my path to heal me. I want to thank you for bringing this condition to the world, because a lot of people don't understand.
Louquanis Louquanis from Newburgh wrote on October 4, 2018 at 7:34 pm:
Hi is was April 2004 and I could not go threw another day with this I went to the e r as my doctor directed me and bam was admitted to the hospital had two brain aneurysm went to have surgery and thank God iam still here it's now 2018.
Krista Krista from Cambridge,On, Canada wrote on October 2, 2018 at 11:06 am:
In October of 2015 my mom suffered her 1st brain aneurysm....she survived...they coiled (13 coils) and she went on to live an adjusted lifestyle but overall extremely lucky and grateful she came out for the most part in tact and functioning amazingly well. Fast foward to summer of 2017 and she had a 2nd aneurysm just off the opening of the original site...again she survived...I know CRAAAZY!!!....this time they actually opened her up and performed the clipping procedure... remarkably she is still with us and functioning at pretty much 100%. She had minimal to zero warning signs either time but looking back we could have possibly recognized SOMETHING had we known more about aneurysms....there was some personal stress in her life prior to the 1st one....she did mention the tingling tongue sensation but always kind of dismissed it...and had always suffered from headaches but once the aneurysms bled those headaches she described as unbearable...had she not gone to hospital right away either time she would not be with us today....1st time she bent over to pick up her purse and the 2nd time she rolled over in bed....simple movements of every day life. She was a smoker for many many years and the doctors advised that should she start smoking again after the 1st aneurysm she would surely suffer with another and surviving 2 is almost impossible. She stopped of the greatest gifts of her having gone through these ordeals. The trauma has had life long effects of course, she has some memory deficiencies, is afraid every day of it happening again and has suffered other minor changes however overall we have been so incredibly fortunate to have more time with her and to take each day as a true blessing. My heart aches for those who have not been on the winning side of these disastrous little beasts....I send you love, light and strength as you grieve your loved one.
Lisa Lisa from Knoxville wrote on September 30, 2018 at 5:59 pm:
I lost my 79 year old mom on July 12th, 2018 as a result of a ruptured brain aneurysm that she suffered on Mother’s Day morning. She had been having severe headaches for about 3 weeks. She went to her doctor and had an mri. She told me the doctor didn’t see anything that alarmed her and that it was probably migraines. 3 weeks later, we took her to the ER because she was having a lot of pain. They ran some test. The doctor was unsure what was causing the pain. He said it was possibly vasculitis and sent her home with a round of prednisone and told her to follow up with her doctor on Monday (this was Saturday). She went home and took the Prednisone. She was still in pain, but was making pies for Mother’s Day. She went to bed around 11:30. My dad found her in the bathroom floor around 7:30 the next morning. An ambulance was called and she was rushed back to the ER which she had been at the day before. This time they said she had suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm. They immediately sent her to another hospital for immediate surgery to coil the aneurysm. She made it through the surgery. She had to have a drain placed to drain the fluid from her brain. She spent 3 weeks in the hospital, but my sweet mom was never the same. She pretty much lost her ability to communicate with us. I think she recognized us, and could echo some words back to us. After 3 weeks, she was sent to 2 different nursing homes. She had a feeding tube and catheter. My mom kept getting one infection after another. 2 months later, it became too difficult for her. She couldn’t fight any longer. She was taken back to the hospital and it was determined to place her in comfort care. She was never going to get better and her quality of life had deteriorated so much. My sweet mom passed away on July 12th, 2018. Our lives have never been the same. She was married to my dad for 56 years. He is really struggling. I’m not sure if something could have been done to prevent the aneurysm from rupturing or not. My world was forever changed!
Jenni McClellamd Jenni McClellamd from Waldwick wrote on September 28, 2018 at 8:21 am:
My Mom suddenly passed away on 11/11/2014 at the young age of 52 due to a brain aneurysm. She had migraines on and off for most of her life. About a year before her passing, her doctor recommended she get a CT scan, which she got done, but nothing showed up, so he just prescribed her medication for the headaches. A few months before she passed, the headaches got increasingly worse, but my Mom hardly ever complained because she never complained about anything. She thought it was hormonal because she was approaching menopause. Needless to say, that wasn’t the case. Losing my Mom was the biggest heartbreak to our family. She was the light of our lives and we miss her every single day. One miracle in all of this was that we donated several of my Mom’s organs and we found out a year later that she saved a 20-year old girl with Cystic Fibrosis who was on life support. She received both of my Mom’s lungs and liver. We have had the honor of meeting the donor recipient and keep in contact, she is the most gracious and amazing person we’ve ever met. I didn’t know about the Lisa Colagrossi Foundation until I saw a commercial this morning and just felt I had to share my story. Raising awareness to detect early signs of brain aneurysm is so needed and could help save so many lives. Don’t ignore the symptoms!
Rachel Koechel Rachel Koechel from Massapequa wrote on September 27, 2018 at 6:59 pm:
I had been getting headaches for two weeks every time I worked out. And one morning I was at the gym sat up and I had the worst pain. I was leaving the gym when the owner stopped me because I didn't look right. He called my friend to get me and despite my hesitation took me to the hospital. After the scan I had a sever bleed in my brain they we're unable to diagnose due to the amount of blood and swelling but all they knew was that it clotted off. After a stay at the hospital I was sent home with a follow up angiogram in November. Then it was 100 percent an aneurysm that was growing back at the base of my brain and would rupture again. They had to place two stents in my head. I just reached a year since this happened when I was 33. I am extremely grateful to be one of the lucky ones, able to tell my story. After this happened we found out they run on my mother's side and all three women died from it. I am very blessed!
Kathryn strout Kathryn strout from Ledyard, CT wrote on September 25, 2018 at 8:31 pm:
My mother passed away from a Brain aneurysm in 1984 at the age of 61. It Came out of nowhere, but later on we found out that she was having headaches and she said that she felt that she had a band around her head. Fast forward to 2018, my son who is 20 years old is being worked up for a connective tissue disease, because he is double jointed, and my mother was double jointed, and now apparently research is saying The connective tissue diseases run in families, that they are not random. So my son was worked up genetically for connective tissue disease at Yale Haven Hospital in New Haven Connecticut, and it did turn out that both my son and I have a gene variant on MYH 11 that causes aneurysms in the brain and in the aorta. So now we have to be followed with echocardiograms and MRIs and the rest of our lives. We had lost track of my mother’s family, and I recently have connected with two cousins, and both of them head relatives that died I’m aneurysms. The people that died woman with her first cousins. So now what I thought was random has now become pretty scary.
Regina B Connallon Regina B Connallon from Hazlet wrote on September 24, 2018 at 7:36 am:
My son, Christopher died of a brain aneurysm on May 4, 2016 at the age of 36. He leaves behind 5 beautiful children along with many family members and friends. He was also an organ donor and saved 5 lives. My son had no warning at all until the day he died when he told his cousin that he felt very hot and that his head started hurting him so bad so he took a shower and that’s when it burst and he fell to the fall while in the shower. By the time he was medevaced to the hospital, it was to late. He not only had one, but there was two aneurysms. I still can’t believe my son is gone and I will mourn him until the day I take my last breath.
Sandy Lowe Sandy Lowe from Nashville wrote on September 23, 2018 at 7:12 pm:
My 21 year old daughter, Margaret Helen Lowe, died of a RCA Aneurysm September 1, 2015 while running at the University of Virginia. We have a race called Miles for Margaret that raises money for her personal philanthropies on the UVA Campus. I did not know about the Lisa Foundation until Fox and Friends. Her survivors have been devastated by her death. Margaret donated 9 organs all her vital organs as well as bone, skin, and corneas. She complained of headaches and a CAT scan showed no abnormalities. She took Maxalt as her headaches were diagnosed as migraines. My sons are refusing the MRA test at this point. My husband and I are both physicians and we did not ignore her symptoms. We are happy to help in any way to prevent the heartache we have experienced.
Ashley Decker Ashley Decker from Atlanta wrote on September 23, 2018 at 10:13 am:
I suffered a ruptured aneurysm 3/28/17. I am a Nurse and survivor. Enclosed is my you tube story . https://youtube/nJS8FV1l234
Linda Harris Linda Harris from Rollingstone wrote on September 22, 2018 at 5:59 pm:
In 1976, when I was 16 years old, my mother (age 42) suffered a fatal brain aneurysm. It was a traumatic time for our family. I am the youngest of 3 children. My Mother was divorced,with my brother and I still living at home. At the time, my brother had just graduated from high school and embarked on an adventure exploring the US with a friend. Having him away was difficult, but what we were to go through as a family was even tougher. The last we had heard from my brother was that he was in Colorado; Estes Park to be specific. And then the floods came. Every night, my mother would watch the coverage of the devastation in Estes, still having not heard from my brother. Was he still there? Was he safe? Why doesn't he call? We were worried, and had so many questions. That's when it happened. With a rummage sale planned for the upcoming weekend, Mom had family friends over to help with preparations. At one point, she had mentioned that she had such a terrible headache. She sat down to take a small break. At that moment, she passed out. She was rushed to our local hospital and eventually transferred to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. At 16, I was frightened and left feeling helpless. For the next 7 days, she remained in a coma. We would visit, talk with her and hold her hand. Day after day, no response. Meanwhile, still no word from my brother. Stressed, and not knowing what was happening with our brother, we still had to deal with the deteriorating situation with my Mom. My father was in the Merchant Marines, so, we all felt pretty helpless. Three teenagers, basically alone, were left to deal with her medical decisions. The doctors had put upon us one of the most difficult decisions we ever had to make. They could do surgery, removing a portion of her brain, most definately rendering her in a vegitative state. We knew that's not what our mother wanted. That wasn't life, and we were 100% certain that she wouldn't want to live like that. As painfull as it was, we made the decision not to do the surgery. We sat. We waited. Uncertainty is so many ways. On the 9th day, we receive a call from the Red Cross. They had found our brother! Alive and well! Thank God!! They had relayed to him what was happening back home and advised that he return ASAP. He and his friend had left Colorado and headed to the hospital. We still visited Mom in shifts, talked to her, joked with her, sang with her everyday. Waiting...for any type of response. Nothing. The prognosis was not good. We knew it, we felt it. It was Fall; early September. At 16, I should have been back to school. Instead, our days were filled with worry, spending all day at the hospital, taking turns with other relatives to visit with Mom when we could. On this particular, bright and sunny day, we were once again sitting in the hospital waiting room to take our turn, when I look up and see my brother! Walking quickly towards us, but looking tired, stressed and thin. After all, he had just been through quite the ordeal too. But on top of all that, he learns about his Mother, barely clinging to life and trying his best to make it home. But, he's safe, and he's home! After briefly filling him in on what has happened and bringing him up to date on her status, of course, he is anxious to see his mother. We all went into the room. To this point, we have tried everything to get some kind of response from our Mother; but nothing. My brother, also feeling defeated and so worried, finally gets to Mom's bedside. He gently puts her hand in his. As tears rolled down his face, he caresses her hand and tells her " Mom, it's me, Randy. I'm here, I'm home. It's gonna be OK". At that moment, he felt a very faint movement! Our Mother, who we've had no response from at all the last 8 days, very lightly squeezed his hand! We couldn't believe it! Could that mean that she is coming back to us?! Our hopes didn't last long...shortly after, our Mother was called home. Her struggle was over. It took such a long time for our lives to get back to somewhat normal. None of us expected to lose her at such a young age. And we were just kids ourselves. Nevertheless, our Mother raised 3 strong kids. We struggled, but we all survived and all moved on tohave healthy happy lives. Fast forward to 2004. Allof us 3 kids are grown and married. Since we lost our Mother and became adults, we have all been faithful about annual check ups. My brother and I both inherited my Mom's high blood pressure, so my doctor was mindful of that, as well as the family medical history with my mother. I had started getting alot headaches, and some leg pain. I mentioned that to my doctor at my next visit. Because of the family, medical history, my doctor suggested having an MRA. Approximately a week later,I received the call from my doctor telling me that I had a brain aneurysm! The next week, I went in for consultation with my doctor, who had arranged for immediate admission to a hospital in Mankato, MN. for major surgery, shaving of the head, along with 8-12 weeks of recovery. I was scared. Was I headed for the same fate as my mother? That night, I went home to make arrangements for surgery in Mankato,calling friends and family to inform them. My sister-in-law, who works at Mayo clinic in Rochester, suggested a 2nd opinion. She intended to go to work the following day and talk to a few experts and doctors there. Within 24 hrs., I recieved a call from Dr. Brown, head of neurology at Mayo clinic. He explained to me that they were currently doing a study on the correlation of brain aneurysms among siblings, and wanted to take on my case. Within 1 day, I was at Mayo, talking with a team of doctors, going through tests and listening to their plan of attack for my aneurysm. To make a long story short, Mayo clinic did a coiling procedure on my aneurysm and everything went smoothly. And....I missed 2 days of work! I can't tell you how thankful I am for Dr. Brown, his team, Mayo and all the friends and family that were involved in my diagnosis and helped with treatment plan. I feel so very blessed and fortunate for them, and also for the advancements in medical technology (and even the difference in procedures between hospitals!). My Mother was only 42 when she passed of a brain aneurysm. Another fact that I left out of this long story is that my father also died of a brain aneurysm at age 61! I feel like I've been given a second chance at life. Over the years, I have told this story several times to people that seem to have symptoms, or even just in normal conversations. Since that time, both my siblings have also had testing done to detect aneurysms and have, thankfully been free.
Derryl Derryl from Chaumont, NY wrote on September 22, 2018 at 5:25 pm:
My mother was a very active, healthy 78 year old. She rarely had a headache and never complained of any aches or pains. The only medication was an occasional aspirin. She layed down to take a nap, because she said she had a headache. She never woke up. My concern, is this hereditary.
Carol Toto Carol Toto from Hallandale,Florida wrote on September 22, 2018 at 5:09 pm:
I lost my beloved father at age 48 from an aneurysm in the circle of willis. Hereditary and deadly. I know firsthand how devastating and underreported it is. I am a nurse and have cared for many patients who were successfully treated for their aneurysm . I underwent an MRA, and my younger sister survived exactly what our father succumbed to. God bless all who are impacted by the devastation of cerebral aneurysms.
Joanne Starnes Joanne Starnes from Farmville wrote on September 22, 2018 at 5:04 pm:
On August 16, 2001 my daughter Michelle Marie Lileks, who was 10 and a half years old, died of a brain aneurysm on my couch in her sleep at 9:40 am. 17 years later, I still go through shock of her death.
ramona Tuberman ramona Tuberman from Harbor City wrote on September 22, 2018 at 10:18 am:
In April 2010, I woke and drove to work as usual. Had been experiencing neck and shoulder pain as well as Terrible headaches usually early in the a.m. for many months.I also had dull jaw aching on the right side. From time to time above my left ankle I experienced a numb sensation that puzzled me. Never having migraines I attributed it to migraine and even cut my long hair and purchased new pillows thinking this would resolve. Also had periods when standing outside in very warm temps of legs being very weak. My hearing became unbearable during these episodes and a type of roaring sound would drown out t.v. or conversation. I began joking at work pretending to make sign language to my co workers as they were aware my headaches interfered with my hearing. I was in the outer hall talking to a co worker when all of a sudden there was one sharp pain and then as I was trying to speak I was unable to with the feeling all of my air was gone to put out words. I slid down the wall to sit at my co workers encouragement and felt a very warm sensation flow down from my head over my shoulders. Then the lighting began to flicker, but never lost consciousness. Paramedics were called and determined I was fine advising me to see a Dr. later in the day. My sister insisted they take me to the hospital which would be the only reason I am able to write this today. It was determined I had a right posterior communicating artery aneurysm. I spent the next 2 days being transferred to hospitals that kept me stable until I was transferred to a hospital equipped to perform the coil embolization. That evening I was made aware of how serious this was before going into surgery. Up to that point I have bits & pieces of memory on previous days in hospitals. The surgery was performed and I spent the next 15 days in the Ronald Regan ICU. Realizing how fortunate I was to have survived this surgery not to mention the hours after the hemoragic stroke before surgery could be performed. I am one of the few mostly intact survivors of this very deadly condition. No one walks away totally free of any major brain trauma. My after affects are minimal and for the most part I am able to hide these issues from anyone that sees me. I am Truly one of the Very Blessed . I can walk, talk, and think clearly. Headaches "ARE" a symptom to be taken very seriously especially if you have never been prone to having them. The accompanying neck and shoulder pain as well as jaw aching is a definite flag to seek medical attention. These past 8 years have been a gift and I am one of the lucky survivors of this very deadly condition.
Mark Barrie Mark Barrie from Aurora wrote on September 22, 2018 at 9:10 am:
I would like to show my appreciation for what this foundation is for. I am from Canada and I hope the work done here will make it to my country. I have a personal interest in this as about ten years ago my best friend died of an aneurysm. I still have not really gotten over the shock of it. I saw him a few days before and he was his normal self. Three days later I heard he died. I was so sad that my friend was gone. I hope the efforts put forth here will save someone else’s best friend or loved ones then. I thank Lisa foundation.
Cynthia Darlene Caylor Cynthia Darlene Caylor from Dalton wrote on September 22, 2018 at 8:45 am:
I have 9 brain aneurysms, first one bust ,had to have a vp brain shunt put in, i will be going back to hospital in a few days to have a stent placed in the first aneurysm they ahve all been coiled, except 1 if not for my Lord I would not be here.
Maggie Lambert Maggie Lambert from Ocala wrote on September 22, 2018 at 7:48 am:
My name is Maggie my son Robert(Bobby) are suffer from Brain aneurysm is happened on the July 14 2018 that when I took him to the ER they make us wait for almost 5 hours and it progressively to worsened by the hour until at 11 pm he was lost consciousness then there was one doctor that keep slapping him and when they try to scoot him to bed from the wheelchair they hit his head to the wall twice and keep slapped him around try to wake him up even though the urine an blood test was negative they think he was using drug but my son was Autism and mentally delay he don't use drug because he hardly leave the house if he leave the house usually he always with family, I told that to the doctor but she won't listened then there is another doctor pass by then shouting he is seizing then they give him meds and he told them to take him to scanned that save him because as soon as he see they induced the coma and put the breathing tube on him and airlifted him to different hospital that save his life with 5 surgery and 2 procedure on the august 03 2018 the intervention hospital send him back to the original hospital then they proceed to mistreating him first they forgot to feed him through the G-tube continuous feed for 2 days and also they don't have the osmolite to feed him then when I advocate for him they finally doing investigate and apologize and also there were other incident until figure it out which nurse that we need to avoid then they move him to the different floor and we start all over again. I am so scared and upset because we don't have the insurance and we still apply to SSI because he's 19 yo no rehab close to our house will take him and the hospital after struggle to explain is not safe in the house we don't have anyone to watch over him they finally agree to get him stay but they way they treated him is poorly so on Thursday 09/20/2018 when I came in and see him like everyday we come to visit after work 6:30 pm we see him in the state of mess his face full of chocolate because he feeds him self with soft diet his left side on the body was partially paralyze but the feeling slowly back and his left hand is contracted therefore is hard to eat by his self so when we see him thoroughly dirty there was crumb every where I am upset no wonder he been call me and text me all day also I see him where the nurse leave him at the jerry chair alone and I try to call the nurse to ask where his helmet or why the boot fell out and then I explain to the nurse that he is mentally delay so his age is 19 but he act like 8 after the incident so he need to be watch before he almost undue the harness because he think he can walk so when we visit that night we are upset because what happen all day and see him in the state his in make me upset then when I question the tech I was a little bit rude to ask of the gown and clean sheets so I can change but the she was upset then she proceed to lie and told the nursing director that I called her "Bitch" when I am not called her that but I over heard her ask her other college that she scared to get fired so her friend say I will fix this then she call and lie to her director then the director come after I called him to report that but he come charging and told us that we trespassed the hospital and proceed to throw us out without asking about our side then when we were escorted by police who don't even ask our side he just stated he do what the hospital want not what was right my husband at the elevator having a grand Mal attack and having seizure because he is epileptic then I was fainted which I don't remember why so they want to throw us out but the other people told him no they have to treated us first then the nursing director was there and told all the staff at the ER to release us as soon as possible the banned us from visiting our son. In the morning I called the administrator than was aware all our struggle than asked if he can help us and also I want to move my son back to the original floor so after about 2 hours later they call me back then told me the lifted the trespass and I can come but there were a rules to follow only one call in the morning and one at night and we can not harassed the nurse or tech to asked for help if he was wet he have to do it himself and also supervised visit and only 1 at the time but if my daughter with us she can stay at the room with the brother so I just say okay because I want to visit my son and I have nothing to hide which is surprise them because the director seem to be wanting to actually arrest me because if I not complied to the demand and also I told her I want him to be treated fairly and we will not have to asked all the time and I won't them to comply with the order like he need to be turn every 2 hours to avoiding bed sore and also the boots every 2 hours because the foot drop that he have but they haven't do that at all then yesterday when I finally visit I see they put the boot and turn him I told her the nursing director all this could be avoided if they just treated him like a patient and person also they will have to do what best for him just because we are poor and no insurance except the medically needy we will pay what we can to get our son treatment also I told them from the beginning we will do everything to apply to the help out there that will be able to help and this morning I see the show on the fox and friend I decide to share his story. Please help us we don't know what we can do to help him also the agency and support system that will be able to help. thank you
Lynn Lynn from Nixa wrote on September 13, 2018 at 1:11 pm:
I just heard about this foundation and am glad to see some light brought to Brain Aneurysms. Forty-two years ago, when I was 10, I lost my Mother (age 45) to this. She was simply laying in bed and was getting ready to get up for the day, and it ruptured. We, of course, didn't know what had occurred until later. Her body held on for a few days, but, once the Aneurysm burst, she was brain dead. About a month prior to her Aneurysm bursting, she fell in the bathtub and sustained a concussion. We always felt like this attributed to the Aneurysm bursting a few weeks later. We were told it was not genetic and she was born with it. I am not sure how true that is.

Our Foundation

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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P.O. Box 13

Frankenmuth, MI 48734

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