Surgical Treatments for Hemorrhagic Stroke

Treatment of hemorrhagic stroke focuses on controlling the bleeding and reducing pressure in your brain caused by the excess fluid.

After a hemorrhagic stroke, surgery through the skull (craniotomy) might be required to remove the blood and relieve pressure on the brain if the area of bleeding is large enough. Surgery may also be used to repair blood vessel problems associated with hemorrhagic strokes. Your physician may recommend one of these procedures if an aneurysm, arteriovenous malformation (AVM) or other type of blood vessel problem caused your hemorrhagic stroke:

  • Surgical clipping. A surgeon places a tiny clamp at the base of the aneurysm, to stop blood flow to it. This clamp can keep the aneurysm from bursting, or it can keep an aneurysm that has recently hemorrhaged from bleeding again.
  • Surgical AVM removal. Surgeons may remove a smaller AVM if it’s located in an accessible area of your brain. This eliminates the risk of rupture and lowers the risk of hemorrhagic stroke. However, it’s not always possible to remove an AVM if:
    • It is located deep within the brain.
    • It is simply too large.
    • Its removal would cause too much of an impact on brain function.
  • Angioplasty and stents. In an angioplasty (the surgical repair or unblocking of an artery), a surgeon threads a catheter to your carotid arteries through an artery in your groin. A balloon is then inflated to expand the narrowed artery. Then a stent can be inserted to support the opened artery.
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