What is a Cerebral Hemorrhage?
A cerebral hemorrhage is bleeding between the skull and brain tissue. Symptoms include headaches, nausea, vomiting, and sudden tingling, weakness, numbness or paralysis of the face, arm or leg. It can be life-threatening or result in brain damage. Cerebral hemorrhages have more specific names, depending on the location of the bleeding.
Causes of Cerebral Hemorrhage
Bleeding in the brain can happen for many different reasons, including head trauma and medical conditions, such as tumors or high blood pressure. Structural issues, such as an abnormal connection between the arteries or abnormal blood vessel walls, can result in rupture. Bleeding disorders, pregnancy, smoking, and excessive alcohol or drug use can also make patients more susceptible to brain bleeds.
Symptoms of Cerebral Hemorrhage
Sudden, severe headaches are the most noticeable symptom of cerebral hemorrhage. Patients are also likely to vomit or feel nauseated. Confusion, seizures, and vision problems also often occur. Patients may notice loss of balance, difficulty swallowing, speech difficulties, and tingling, weakness, and numbness in the face, arms, or legs. Trouble breathing and an abnormal heart rate may also occur.
Diagnosis of a Cerebral Hemorrhage
A doctor will examine you immediately if any type of brain hemorrhage is suspected. Diagnosis is usually made based on the results of imaging, including an MRI or CT scan. Your doctor may also order blood work, a urinalysis, a vascular study, and an electroencephalogram.
Treatment of Cerebral Hemorrhage
Any type of brain bleed is considered a medical emergency, and patients must receive immediate care to determine the appropriate treatment and to have the best chance at a full recovery. A hemorrhage may require a surgeon to put a small hole in the skull or to otherwise open the skull to relieve pressure. Cerebral aneurysms (when a weak spot on a blood vessel in the brain bulges) that have not ruptured may require surgical clipping. In some cases, medication may be used to control conditions, such as seizures or high blood pressure. Long-term rehabilitation or long-term care may be needed in some cases.
What you can expect at UTHealth Houston Neurosciences
UTHealth Houston Neurosciences brings together a multidisciplinary team of board-certified, fellowship-trained neurosurgeons, neurologists, researchers, and pain management specialists to help provide relief for even the most complex problems. Your team will share insights, leading to better treatment decisions and outcomes. You will receive expert care, excellent communication, and genuine compassion.
We first investigate nonsurgical treatment options, including medical management, pain management, physical therapy, rehabilitation, and watchful waiting. When surgery is needed, our neurosurgeons routinely employ innovative minimally invasive techniques. Throughout the treatment process, we will work closely with the doctor who referred you to ensure a smooth transition back to your regular care. While you are with us, you will receive expert care, excellent communication, and genuine compassion.
At UTHealth Houston Neurosciences, we offer patients access to specialized neurological care at clinics across the greater Houston area. To ask us a question, schedule an appointment, or learn more about us, please call (713) 486-8000, or click below to send us a message. In the event of an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room.