Aneurysm Study

A brain aneurysm is an abnormal bulge in one of the brain's blood vessels.

They're often not discovered until after they've ruptured and the result can be deadly. 

But new research that could lead to a screening test to find aneurysms before it's too late.

About three to five percent of Americans have a brain aneurysm. 28,000 rupture each year.
About half of the victims die within minutes of massive bleeding.

Korky Schnitker has never had a brain anuerysm.  But she's happy to participate in a study to find out more about them.  "I knew my family would be interested in participating if there was any way that it would help." The 54-year old has two sisters who've had multiple aneurysms.  Korky's family history increases her risk.  In the general population, the chance of having a brain aneurysm is about 2 to 6%. If there are two siblings with a brain aneurysm, the chance of having an aneurysm in that family is about 30 percent. 

Now researchers are studying the family connection to understand why aneurysms develop. The findings may lead to a way to catch them before it's too late. 

Blood samples from family members who participate will be stored for future research, where they could be examined not only with today's techniques, but potentially with techniques that we don't even know about 10, 20 years from now and even beyond.

Korky says her sister, would approve of the study. "If she were here, she would be participating, you know. She would have been the one to say, hey we gotta get that paperwork in and see if we, if we can help them. Absolutely."

The Familial Intra-Cranial Aneurysm or FIA  study is a national study funded by the National Institutes of Health.