This Woman’s Throbbing Headache Was Actually a Brain Aneurysm

Cece Kline’s Caribbean vacation turned into a nightmare after a brain aneurysm left her in critical condition.

CeCe Kline, a woman from Bristol, Tennessee was on a cruise visiting the Caribbean island of St. Maarten when she started complaining of a headache. Moments later, she collapsed on the beach due to a brain aneurysm.

Their vacation quickly turned into a nightmare. “She was completely fine, and then it just hit her all of the sudden,” her niece, Lindsey Reimer, told local Bristol news station WJHL. “She went straight forward into the water and just passed out cold.”

According to her family, Kline was “very close to death” and was trapped on the Caribbean island for several days before she was able to get back to the United States where she could be properly treated. Her health insurance had lapsed, which made it difficult to transfer her home for life-saving treatment. Kline’s family have set up a Go Fund Me account to help her extensive medical bills, and are “praying like crazy,” for her recovery.

While her family initially thought Kline suffered from a stroke, her doctors confirmed it was an aneurysm once she made it to the hospital. According to one 2016 survey, 90 percent of Americans aren’t sure what a brain aneurysm is, nor can they identify any signs or symptoms of one. Here are the crucial warning signs to know.

What is a brain aneurysm, exactly?

Brain Aneurysm

A brain aneurysm is a weakness in the wall of one of your brain’s blood vessels, Howard Riina, MD, a neurosurgeon with New York University’s Langone Medical Center, previously explained to Prevention.

When blood flows through your brain, a weakness in the blood vessel wall pushes outward and forms a bulge. This bulge can rupture, and when it does, blood can leak out into your brain tissue. Even scarier? Many people are walking around with a brain aneurysm and don’t even know it until a rupture of leak occurs. Many never even rupture.

“Some data we have suggest 6 to 9 percent of the population have one,” Dr. Riina explained.

What are the symptoms of a brain aneurysm?

Learning to spot the symptoms of a brain aneurysm can be life-saving. The telltale sign is a seriously bad headache—think, the worst headache of your life—usually focused behind the eyes. People can also experience small headaches in the days or weeks leading up to their rupture, which is basically small blood leaks increasing the pressure inside the cranium.

A brain aneurysm can also be accompanied by other symptoms, such as a stiff neck, face tingling, light sensitivity, a feeling of weakness in the limbs, blurry or double vision, extreme fatigue, or even seizures. Some people even claim they hear a gunshot or boom when the rupture occurs.

What should you do if you experience a brain aneurysm?

🚨 If you or someone you are with is suffering from any or all of these symptoms, it’s important to call 911 or go to the emergency room immediately. 🚨

Getting immediate medical help is extremely important, so doctors can perform treatment procedures to relieve the pressure caused by the aneurysm. Unfortunately, according to Dr. Riina, 30 to 50 percent of sufferers will die as soon as an aneurysm ruptures and another third will have some kind of lasting impairment. The upshot? A third of those who have suffered a brain aneurysm will “return to their normal level of functioning,” he says.

After being stranded on the island for four days after her aneurysm, Kline has gone through two surgeries since her return to the United States and remains in critical condition.


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