What are cerebral aneurysms?

Updated: Dec 06, 2018
  • Author: David S Liebeskind, MD, FAAN, FAHA, FANA; Chief Editor: Helmi L Lutsep, MD  more...
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Answer

Cerebral aneurysms are pathologic focal dilatations of the cerebrovasculature that are prone to rupture. These vascular abnormalities are classified by presumed pathogenesis. Saccular, berry, or congenital aneurysms constitute 90% of all cerebral aneurysms and are located at the major branch points of large arteries. Dolichoectatic, fusiform, or arteriosclerotic aneurysms are elongated outpouchings of proximal arteries that account for 7% of all cerebral aneurysms. Infectious or mycotic aneurysms are situated peripherally and comprise 0.5% of all cerebral aneurysms. Other peripheral lesions include neoplastic aneurysms, rare sequelae of embolized tumor fragments, and traumatic aneurysms. Traumatic injury also may result in dissecting aneurysms in proximal vessels. Microaneurysms of small perforating vessels may result from hypertension.


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