Woman loses eyesight after artery swells inside brain
Sitting in a ward at KEM Hospital in Parel, Meena Yadav, 35, looked a little disoriented. The housewife from Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh, is grappling with the darkness that crept into her life when she suddenly lost her eyesight two months ago.mumbai Updated: May 22, 2011 01:15 IST
Sitting in a ward at KEM Hospital in Parel, Meena Yadav, 35, looked a little disoriented. The housewife from Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh, is grappling with the darkness that crept into her life when she suddenly lost her eyesight two months ago.
The cause for the blindness has left her family baffled — an artery in Yadav’s brain had swollen to the size of a small tomato and damaged her optic nerves.
On May 10, doctors performed a complex five-hour brain surgery to drain the blood from the swollen artery to ease the pressure the swelling (aneurysm) was exerting on the optic nerves. The operation has given Yadav hope that her sight might be restored.
“There is a significant chance of recovery. However, the extent of regained sight remains uncertain,” said Dr Atul Goel, head of neurosurgery, KEM Hospital.
“Although aneurysms are common, the one in Yadav’s brain was massive and damaged the optic nerves leading to blindness. If that balloon had ruptured, the patient could have died due to brain hemorrhage,” he added.
Yadav said that it was two months ago when she developed a severe headache, high fever, dizziness and a bout of vomiting. Over the next few days, she lost sight in both her eyes.
She was advised to seek treatment in Mumbai.
The surgery was challenging owing to the large size, thin wall and deep location of the aneurysm. They clipped the swollen artery, drain the blood and then reconstructed the artery.
“Any damage to the internal carotid artery could have led to instant death,” said Dr Goel.
Doctors are still to ascertain the causes that led to the swelling in the artery in Yadav’s brain.
“There have been very few cases reported in the West of people losing sight in one eye due to such an abnormality. Yadav’s is an exceptional case and we plan to publish it in a European journal to let medical fraternity know of such a rare case,” said Dr Abhishek Agrawal, a visiting neurosurgeon from the US.