Brain Failure pp 173-190 | Cite as

Perspectives in Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage: Present and Future

  • D. Chyatte
Conference paper
Part of the Update in Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine book series (UICM, volume 9)


Intracranial aneurysms have been a source of human illness for centuries. Human remains excavated at Nubia dating back to the Byzantine period show pathological changes compelling us to believe that the people were affected by intracranial aneurysms. Despite this, surviving medical writings rarely describe patients who may have suffered a subarachnoid hemorrhage. It was not until the 18th century when Morgagni (1761) and Biumi (1778) first described cerebral aneurysms and showed that their rupture might lead to subarachnoid hemorrhage. Future evaluation of their observations did not occur until 1859 when Sir William Gull recognized the pathologic nature of aneurysms with his now famous statements, “Whenever young persons die with ingravescent apoplexy, and after death a large effusion of blood is found, especially if the effusion be over the surface of the brain, in the meshes of the pia mater, the presence of an aneurysm is probable.” As refinements in clinical neurology were made in the 19th century, several autopsy series described giant intracranial aneurysms which presented during life because of mass effect. However, understanding the clinical syndrome of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage awaited Quincke’s description of the technique for lumbar puncture in 1872.


Cerebral Blood Flow Cerebral Ischemia Subarachnoid Hemorrhage Intracranial Aneurysm Cerebral Aneurysm 
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