Risk factorsBy Mayo Clinic Staff
A number of factors can contribute to weakness in an artery wall and increase the risk of a brain aneurysm. Brain aneurysms are more common in adults than in children and more common in women than in men.
Some of these risk factors develop over time; others are present at birth.
Risk factors that develop over time
- Older age
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis)
- Drug abuse, particularly the use of cocaine
- Head injury
- Heavy alcohol consumption
- Certain blood infections
- Lower estrogen levels after menopause
Risk factors present at birth
Sept. 01, 2015
- Inherited connective tissue disorders, such as Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, that weaken blood vessels
- Polycystic kidney disease, an inherited disorder that results in fluid-filled sacs in the kidneys and usually increases blood pressure
- Abnormally narrow aorta (coarctation of the aorta), the large blood vessel that delivers oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the body
- Cerebral arteriovenous malformation (brain AVM), an abnormal connection between arteries and veins in the brain that interrupts the normal flow of blood between them
- Family history of brain aneurysm, particularly a first-degree relative, such as a parent, brother or sister
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