Subarachnoid hemorrhage and the main causes
Subarachnoid haemorrhage is spontaneous intracranial bleeding, caused by the rupture in the blood vessel in subarachnoid space, which is a space between 2 other layers that surrounds the brain tissue. Unfortunately, this is a frequent cause of death. Cause of subarachnoid hemorrhage is already mentioned rupture that happens in the wall of pathologically enlarged brain artery (this condition is called aneurism). Second cause is also a rupture, but this time the rupture of arteriovenous malformation. Another cause might be hypertension or arteriosclerosis of arteries in the brain. There is also small percentage of subarachnoid hemorrhages with an unknown cause. In younger people, up to age of 20, the main cause is AV malformation whereas the rupture of aneurism is more common in older people.
Subarachnoid hemorrhage starts suddenly and can happen in stressful conditions, and the symptoms include hard headache in the back of the head, followed by nausea and vomiting, photophobia (sensitivity to light), and stiff neck. It can include short loss of consciousness, but if this condition combines with intracerebral hematoma, unconsciousness lasts longer. Also, this type of hemorrhagia might induce spread of blood in other brain chambers, thus endangering vital life functions.
Possible complications and the treatment
Complications of subarachnoid haemorrhage include arterial spasm, created due to narrowing of brain arteries. Further on, this induces ischemia of the brain, and unconsciousness also occurs. Another complication is hydrocephalus, which emerges because of the blockage of the brain liquor circulation, thanks to blood clots. Epilepsy also might be a complication, as well as heart problems and arrhythmia. Diagnosis is made thanks to brain scan and cerebral angiography.
There are several conditions that go hand in hand with subarachnoid hemorrhage. For example, it can happen in pregnancy, if a woman suffers from preeclampsia, but coartacion of aorta often goes along subarachnoid hemorrhage. In these cases, mortality rate is much higher. Polycystic kidney is another problem that can be found in patients who suffer from subarachnoid hemorrhage.
Bed resting in dark rooms is recommended; elastic socks and bandages should be used and medications for stool softening are needed. Control of fluid intake and infusion should be applied, too. As for the medications, analgesics should be taken, medications for brain edema, and anticonvulsants, in case if epileptic seizures are possible. Prevention of AV spasm is done with the help of calcium channel blockers. If there is hypertension, appropriate meds should be used. As for complications, evacuation of hematoma and therapy for hydrocephalus are done, and if needed, the surgery is also an option.