Types of Cerebral Aneurysm

Neuro Vascular Model with Aneurysm

A cerebral aneurysm (also known as a brain aneurysm) is a weak or thin spot on an artery in the brain that balloons or bulges out and fills with blood. The bulging aneurysm can put pressure on the nerves or brain tissue. A ruptured aneurysm can cause serious health problems such as hemorrhagic stroke, brain damage, coma, and even death. 


There are three types of cerebral aneurysms. Saccular aneurysm, also known as a berry aneurysm and fusiform aneurysm are the most common form of cerebral aneurysm. Mycotic aneurysm represents the rarer type of aneurysms. Aneurysms are also classified by size: small(<11mm), large(11-25mm), and giant(>25mm). 

types of cerebral aneurysm

Computed Tomography is a fast and painless scan, also the first test a physician will order to determine if blood has leaked into the brain.  CT uses x-rays to create two-dimensional images, or “slices,” of the brain and skull. Occasionally a contrast dye is injected into the bloodstream prior to scanning to assess the arteries, and look for a possible aneurysm.  CTA can show the size, location, and shape of an unruptured or a ruptured aneurysm. 

3D reconstruction from CT data 1

Endovascular treatment, such as platinum coil embolization, is a less invasive procedure than microvascular surgical clipping.  A doctor will insert a a catheter into an artery, usually in the groin, and thread it through the body to the brain aneurysm.  Using a wire, the doctor will pass detachable coils (tiny spirals of platinum wire) through the catheter and release them into the aneurysm.  The coils block the aneurysm and reduce the flow of blood into the aneurysm.

coil embolization

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