Brain hemorrhage

Older man at party after recovering from hemorrhage at The Christ Hospital.

​Your brain depends on proper blood flow to function properly. Brain hemorrhage—uncontrolled bleeding from a blood vessel in the brain—interrupts blood flow and can be a life-threatening event. A brain bleed is a medical emergency because if the brain is not properly functioning, it may severely limit cognition, motor function, breathing or other basic bodily functions. 

Brain hemorrhage causes and risk factors

Common causes and risk factors of brain hemorrhage are: 

  • Arteriovenous malformations (AVM)—a group of blood vessels in the brain that form incorrectly, usually before birth. AVMs can form anywhere but are more common in the brain or spinal cord. Sometimes they cause seizures and headaches. About 4 percent of AVMs cause a brain hemorrhage.

  • Brain aneurysm—also called a cerebral aneurysm, this balloon-shaped bulge is a weakened area in a brain artery that may rupture, resulting in a brain hemorrhage (or hemorrhagic stroke).

  • Head injury (trauma)—is a common cause of disability and death in adults. It can be as mild as a bump, bruise or cut on the head. Moderate to severe head injuries may result in serious brain damage.

  • High blood pressure (hypertension)—is among the most common cause of brain hemorrhage. The excess force of your blood against artery walls can weaken brain arteries over time, sometimes leading to the hemorrhage. While typically genetics plays a major role, high blood pressure can be caused by kidney disease, being overweight, smoking, excessive alcohol drinking and too much salt in your diet, This condition increases the risk of heart attack, heart failure, brain hemorrhage and stroke. 

Brain hemorrhage symptoms 

Because brain hemorrhage is a type of stroke, the symptoms are the same but typically vague at first. Symptoms may include:

  • Blurred, partially blocked or distorted vision

  • Face drooping on one side 

  • Inability to complete a sentence or repeat a spoken sentence

  • One or both arms feeling weak or numb (one arm may droop when both arms are raised)

  • Slurred or slow speech 

  • Other symptoms that occur suddenly may include:

  • Difficulty walking

  • Dizziness or loss of balance or coordination

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Numbness or weakness of a leg

  • Problems seeing with one or both eyes

  • Severe headache with no known cause

Why choose The Christ Hospital Health Network

Our patients benefit from access to the latest approaches for the diagnosis and treatment of brain hemorrhage. 

Our dedicated neurosurgery team includes expert neurosurgeons and radiologists. Working as a team, they combine compassion and experience with advanced diagnostic and treatment technologies for brain hemorrhage.

Find out more about brain hemorrhage care at The Christ Hospital Health Network.