Brain Hemorrhage - Causes

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What causes a brain hemorrhage?

The most common cause of a brain hemorrhage is elevated blood pressure. Over time, elevated blood pressure can weaken arterial walls and lead to rupture. When this occurs, blood collects in the brain leading to symptoms of a stroke. Other causes of hemorrhage include aneurysm -- a weak spot in the wall of an artery -- which then balloons out and may break open. Arteriovenous malformations (AVM) are abnormal connections between arteries and veins and are usually present from birth and can cause brain hemorrhage later in life. In some cases, people with cancer who develop distant spread of their original cancer to their brain (metastatic disease) can develop brain hemorrhages in the areas of brain where the cancer has spread. In elderly individuals, amyloid protein deposits along the blood vessels can cause the vessel wall to weaken leading to a hemorrhagic stroke. Cocaine or drug abuse can weaken blood vessels and lead to bleeding in the brain. Some prescription drugs can also increase the risk of brain hemorrhage.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: mcl3086, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: June 17

I had surgery to remove a meningioma and had a heart attack while in the recovery room. After that, the doctors placed me on a low dose of the blood thinner, heparin. As I had just had a second holed drilled into my skull, it wasn't a surprise that I developed a severe brain bleed within 24 hours. An external ventricular drain (EVD) was ordered which involved having more holes drilled into my skull to alleviate pressure. I also suffered hydrocephalus and a cerebellar tonsillar herniation. It has been seven months; I still have headaches almost every day, and memory and fatigue problems. I worry sometimes about the future, but I have learned that the only thing I can do is be patient and wait to see what symptoms are permanent and which will fade with time.

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Comment from: 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 20

In 2009 when I was 35 years of age I suffered bleeding on the brain, having fractured my skull after having an epileptic fit and banging my head on the bathroom floor. The doctors were 50/50 going to operate, they decided not to operate and in time the blood clot reduced in size. I suffer from bad headaches from time to time.

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