Detection and Treatment Guide Updated 2017 Detection-and-Treatment-2017 - Page 14

Unruptured Aneurysms The optimal management of unruptured aneurysms is the subject of considerable research. This is because the natural history of unruptured aneurysms — meaning, what happens if they are not treated? — is not well understood. In addition, the risks associated with the treatment of unruptured aneurysms are not known with certainty. When deciding whether to treat an unruptured aneurysm, the risk of treatment is compared with the risk of leaving the aneurysm alone. Treatment may increase the likelihood of suffering a stroke, for example, and may also lead to problems with thinking or functioning, especially among elderly or ill patients. Decisions about treatment must therefore be specific to each patient. Your doctor will take into account these factors: • Large aneurysms are more likely to rupture • Aneurysms located in certain areas of the brain may be more likely to rupture • Patients who have had a previous aneurysm rupture are at greater risk of a future rupture of other unruptured aneurysms they may have • Patients with a family history of aneurysms may be more likely to have an aneurysm rupture 13