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Established April 15, 1995
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Since my first aneurysm in 1955 I graduated high school and attended the University of Idaho for 2 years. I married in 1959 and have 3 children from that marriage. Patrick — age 38, Pamela — age 34 and Matthew — age 29. We divorced in 1973 and I completed my college education with a BS in Education. Ray and I married in 1983 and I know I have found my soul mate. He saw me through my second aneurysm in 1984 and I do not know what I would do without him. We have 4 grandchildren between the 2 of us.
13 June 1997
I was 16 years old in 1955 when I began having horrible headaches. It was the end of March when the first one began and lasted about one week. My parents called the family doctor and he diagnosed migraine headache. The pain stopped, I went back to school and was ok for a week, then the awful pain began again. I could not function, I could do nothing but lie in bed. My parents took me to Dr. Kessler, in Spokane, WA He immediately hospitalized me.
A spinal tap showed blood. I had an arterialgram which showed an aneurysm on the right side of my brain. In 1955 they did not know much about brain surgery and decided that to save my life the surgery would be ligation of the right carotid artery. A clamp was attached to the artery and slowly the artery was cut off. I suffered 2 strokes and was temporarily paralyzed on my left side.. I was in the hospital for a month. It took me years to regain the use of my left side, and I still do not have complete recovery.
On June 4 , 1984, I suffered another aneurysm on the left side. My symptoms were a feeling of a whirligig in my head, that would not go away, and nausea. I was rushed to a hospital in Boise, ID. I was so lucky that Dr. Patrick Cindrich was the neurosurgeon who saw me that day. I was tested with an arterialgram which showed an aneurysm on the left side of my brain, toward the center. I had surgery the next day, a craniotomy. The aneurysm was clamped off. I went in the hospital on Monday, was released on Friday and had no complications. Medical science has certainly progressed.
Update 23 Mar 98
After the first aneurysm I was weak and depressed and suffered low self esteem. It was oh so very difficult going back to high school with a limp and a left arm that would not straighten. I was very emotional and could not seem to control my emotions. I married in 1959 and gave birth to my oldest son in November. I look back and realize that I was not fully recovered when my son was born. I have 2 other children, born in 1964 and 1968. I was divorced in l972 and returned to college to earn my degree. I graduated in 1974 with a 4.00 my last semester.
I remarried August 2, 1983. The second aneurysm occurred in June 1984. It was much less difficult than the first but I suffered from depression and did not even realize how depressed I was until I began medication in 1994. I could not control my emotions and I cried very easily. I also had some memory loss and a type of aphasia where I would think one thing and say another. I am doing great today and am very happy with my life.
Update 13 December 2008
Susan reminded me that it had been a long time since I updated my information, brain aneurysm in1955. I am back in Spokane WA and am doing great. I hope and pray that I will not have another bleed. The new 3D ultrasound sounds like something I want to have to determine if I am in danger of another bleed. Does anyone know if this is available in Spokane Wa? So far my children and grandchildren have had no symptoms of aneurysm, I hope and pray they do not have a genetic trait for aneurysm.
Update: 29 October 2010
Just wanted to tell everyone that I survived a ruptured intercrainial anuerysm that occurred on April 8, 1955. My story is Brain Aneurysm in 1955. I also survived a second episode in 1984. I feel very blessed to be alive!!!
© Copyright 1997 Karen Winterowd
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