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Brain Aneurysm Recovery

Whether your aneurysm treatment was due to rupture or a planned surgery, Barnes-Jewish Hospital has expert care available at every stage of your brain aneurysm recovery. 

With 115 beds reserved for neuroscience patients, our neuroscience center is accustomed to high patient volumes, which is proven to help those with elective aneurysm surgeries have shorter surgery times, fewer complications and faster recovery times. You can expect a one-night stay in the hospital with endovascular therapy or two or three days after aneurysm clipping.

We do everything we can to help you feel comfortable before and after treatment. You will have a primary care practitioner walk you through your recovery plan and help you understand what to expect. We want to start the rehabilitation process and get you back on your feet as soon as possible. 

You will receive plenty of personal care and attention from an experienced team of physicians at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. Not only do we have stroke-specialized vascular neurologists, but neurointensivists, who are neurology-trained intensive care unit physicians dedicated to our neuro ICU. Care is available around the clock, and you have immediate access to high-level physicians.

Neuro-Intensive Care Unit

Patients with aneurysms that have ruptured or require open surgery are admitted into our neurology intensive care unit (neuro ICU). This specialized, 20-bed unit provides superior advanced life support for stroke patients. Here, our experts work to reduce swelling, monitor cranial pressures and help you take the first steps of recovery. Patients with ruptured aneurysms usually spend about four days in the neuro ICU before moving to the step-down unit.

Our intensive care doctors coordinate patient care with a team of specialists, including:

  • Neurosurgeons
  • Neurointerventional surgeons
  • Neurointensivists 
  • Stroke neurologists
  • Certified neuroscience nurse practitioners and nurses
  • Respiratory, physical, occupational and speech therapists
  • Pharmacists
  • Dieticians
  • Social workers
  • Pastoral care providers

Critical Care Area

If your aneurysm has not ruptured and is being treated endovascularly, you may be admitted for overnight observation in the Critical Care Area. This is a 24/7 post-anesthesia recovery area that is specially designated for patients undergoing neurological procedures.

Neuro Step-Down Unit & Floor

Following your treatment and stay in the neuro ICU, you may be moved to the neurological step-down unit and floor. Your step-down unit team will help you recover so you can return home as soon as possible.

Patients with unruptured aneurysms who received endovascular treatment go to our step-down unit and usually go home the next day. 

The neuro step-down unit features 21 beds and advanced monitoring equipment, which allows nurses to monitor you from the nurses station. Your care will be provided by neuroscience-trained nurses, many of whom are certified in stroke and neurocritical care. This way, you will receive more specialized care than on a general floor.

Your team will work with you to get you moving after aneurysm surgery as soon as possible as part of our early mobility program. At Barnes-Jewish, 80 percent of our neurosurgery patients are out of bed and walking the day after surgery. Getting you up and moving can help shorten your hospital stay and improve your outcomes.

Neuro Nursing Unit & Nursing Innovation Unit

In addition to neuro nursing units, Barnes-Jewish Hospital has a nursing innovation unit. The innovation unit includes more resources than a typical nursing unit, and is where our specially-trained nurses, PhD nurses and statisticians complete specialized nursing assessments to best care for our aneurysm patients.

In the innovation nursing unit, we process flow your entire recovery journey and create milestones that are personalized to your needs. Nurses will evaluate you twice a day to see if you’re meeting those milestones, then gather this data for statistical analysis.

The Rehabilitation Institute of St. Louis

After aneurysm treatment, you may need rehabilitation before returning home, especially if your aneurysm had ruptured. Our social workers and case managers will arrange this based on you and your family’s needs. 

One option is the stroke and brain injury rehabilitation service offered through Washington University School of Medicine. The 40-bed inpatient unit at The Rehabilitation Institute of St. Louis is staffed by a team of neurologists, psychiatrists, neuropsychiatrists and psychologists, as well as physical, occupational and speech therapists who specialize in neurorehabilitation. 

There is also an outpatient center dedicated to patients with cerebrovascular disease. It includes a day program, neuropsychological services and a specialty clinic for people with language or cognitive difficulties.

To learn more about your aneurysm recovery options or make an appointment with a Washington University cerebrovascular specialist at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, call 855.925.0631.

2023 Best Hospitals - Neurology and Neurosurgery

#17 in the Nation by U.S. News & World Report

Find a doctor or make an appointment: 866.867.3627
General Information: 314.747.3000
One Barnes-Jewish Plaza
St. Louis, MO 63110
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