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Hydrocephalus is an abnormal accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) within cavities in the brain called ventricles. Cerebrospinal fluid is produced in the ventricles and in the choroid plexus. It circulates through the ventricular system in the brain and is absorbed into the bloodstream. This fluid is in constant circulation and has many functions, including to surround the brain and spinal cord and act as a protective cushion against injury. It contains nutrients and proteins necessary for the nourishment and normal function of the brain, and carries waste products away from surrounding tissues.

Hydrocephalus occurs when there is an imbalance between the amount of CSF that is produced and the rate at which it is absorbed. As the CSF builds up, it causes the ventricles to enlarge and the pressure inside the head to increase.

A brain aneurysm rarely causes any symptoms unless it bursts (ruptures).
Unruptured brain aneurysms occasionally cause symptoms if they're particularly large or press against tissues or nerves inside the brain.
Symptoms of an unruptured brain aneurysm can include:

  • visual disturbances – such as loss of vision or double vision
  • pain above or around your eye
  • numbness or weakness on one side of your face
  • difficulty speaking
  • headaches
  • loss of balance
  • difficulty concentrating or problems with short-term memory

You should see your GP as soon as possible if you experience symptoms of an unruptured brain aneurysm. Although most aneurysms won't rupture, it's important to get it checked in case treatment is necessary.

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