A brain hemorrhage in simple term is a type of stroke, which is caused by an artery in the brain bursting and causing localized bleeding in the surrounding tissue. This bleeding in the brain kills brain cells. It is also called cerebral hemorrhage or intracerebral hemorrhage or intracranial hemorrhages. They are responsible for about 13% of stroke and are very dangerous for patients.
The blood from disturbance irritates brain tissue, which in turn causes swelling. This is known as cerebral edema. The pooled blood collects into a mass called hematoma. This causes an increase in pressure on nearby brain tissue that reduces vital blood flow and kills brain cells.
What causes bleeding in the brain?
There are many factors and causes for a brain hemorrhage. Some of the most common includes:
- Head trauma: injury to the brain area is one of the most common cause of bleeding in the brain mostly for people younger than age of 50
- High blood pressure: this constant condition can weaken blood vessels wall when are existing for long period of time. Untreated high blood pressure is another preventable cause of brain hemorrhage.
- Aneurysm: weakening of blood vessels wall that swells. It can burst and bleed into brain.
- Blood vessel abnormalities: weakness in blood vessel
- Amyloid angiopathy: this abnormality in blood vessel wall can be seen sometimes with aging and high blood pressure. It may cause small unnoticed bleed before causing a large one which could be life threatening.
- Blood or bleeding disorder: hemophilia and sickle cell anemia can contribute to decreased level of platelets.
- Liver disease
- Brain tumors
What are the symptoms of brain bleeding?
The symptoms can vary from person to person. They depend on the position of the bleeding, rigorousness of bleeding and the quantity of tissue affected. Symptoms may develop suddenly or may be over the time period. They may progressively worsen or may suddenly appear.
- Sudden severe headache
- Seizure with no previous history
- Weakness in arm or leg
- Nausea or vomiting
- Alertness decreases
- Vision changes
- Difficulty speaking, swallowing, writing and reading
- Hand tremors
- Loss of coordination, cannot balance
- Loss consciousness
How is brain hemorrhage treated?
Based on the symptoms the doctor will tell you which part of the brain is affected. The doctor may run various imaging tests such as CT scan/MRI/Angiography which will reveal about the internal bleeding or an MRI. A neurological exam or eye exam may also be asked by the doctor.
Treatment for bleeding in the brain depends on the location, cause and the extent of the hemorrhage. Surgery may be one of the options so that to lessen swelling and prevent bleeding. Certain medication may also be approved by the doctor. This will comprise painkillers, corticosteroids or diuretics to reduce swelling and anticonvulsant to control seizures of the patients.
How much patients can respond to brain hemorrhage the treatment purely depends upon the size of the hemorrhage and the amount of swelling. Sometimes the patients recover completely. The possible complication may include stroke, loss of some of the brain functions. There may be some side effects from the medication or treatment. Death is possible, and may very quickly happen even though prompt medical treatment is given to the patients.