“Barbara had been harboring a total of 13 potentially fatal brain aneurysms without ever knowing it.”
>> Barbara wrote Visiting Patients in the Neurointensive Care Unit where she offers a unique perspective - and ways you can help your loved one - when visiting the neuro ICU.
Barbara Ladd McNamara was preparing a relaxing dinner with her family following a full day of shopping when she collapsed on the kitchen floor in front of her son and husband. As she began to breathe what can only be described as "death breaths" (deep gasps), her husband frantically dialed 911.
The paramedics arrived in just under two minutes. But Barbara's husband did not know how to describe what had just happened to his wife. Becoming increasingly worried, he requested that Barbara be taken to nearby St. John's Hospital which is the sister hospital to St. Joseph's Hospital, home of the National Brain Aneurysm Center.
The physician at St. John's ran a head CT scan and discovered that Barbara had multiple potentially lethal brain aneurysms. St. John's staff recommended that Barbara be transferred directly to the National Brain Aneurysm Center located in St. Joseph's Hospital, with one of the few fully dedicated neurointensive care units (neuro ICU) in the country.
Eric Nussbaum, MD, one of the nation's top neurovascular surgeons, notified Barbara's husband that the odds were against her, but that he would do whatever was necessary to work toward returning her to the highest quality of life.
Dr. Nussbaum and Mike Madison, MD, began by treating two of her aneurysms, which were considered to be the cause of her hemorrhage. In initially performing the less-invasive procedure, coiling, the doctors were able to prevent acute rebleeding.
Drs. Nussbaum and Madison then planned a more strategic line of attack toward Barbara's treatment. They clipped as many of her aneurysms as they could safely achieve through the surgical approach, then coiled Barbara's remaining aneurysms.
Barbara had been harboring a total of 13 potentially fatal brain aneurysms without ever knowing it - all successfully treated by the National Brain Aneurysm surgical team.
Once a ticking time bomb, Barbara can now go on to share many more memories with her husband and children. She has made a full recovery and recently enjoyed a much-needed vacation - a Caribbean cruise to celebrate her 25th wedding anniversary.