ArticleDeath Resulting from Ruptured Cerebral Artery Aneurysm: 219 CasesGonsoulin, Morna M.D.; Barnard, Jeffrey J. M.D.; Prahlow, Joseph A. M.D.Author Information From the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas, U.S.A. Manuscript received June 28, 2001; accepted September 20, 2001. Address correspondence and reprint requests to J.A. Prahlow, M.D., South Bend Medical Foundation, 530 North Lafayette Boulevard, South Bend, IN 46601, U.S.A. E-mail: email@example.com Presented at the 1998 National Association of Medical Examiners Annual Meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology: March 2002 - Volume 23 - Issue 1 - p 5-14 Buy Abstract To characterize the demographics of ruptured cerebral artery aneurysm as a cause of death and to examine the effect of improved diagnostic and therapeutic techniques on the incidence of sudden death associated with the condition, the authors reviewed 219 autopsies performed at the Dallas County Medical Examiner’s Office between 1977 and 1997 in which the cause of death was ruptured cerebral artery aneurysm. Ruptured cerebral artery aneurysms accounted for 1.5% of 15,033 natural deaths and 0.4% of all deaths (45,492) followed by autopsy during this period. The majority (56%) of cases occurred in females, with Caucasian females composing the largest group (38%). Seventy-seven percent of cases occurred in individuals between the ages of 31 and 70 years, with the highest concentration in the 41- to 50-year decade (29%). The most common location for ruptured aneurysms was the middle cerebral artery distribution (39%). Multiple aneurysms occurred in 22 (9.1%) cases. Other factors, such as medical history, coexisting disease, symptoms, activity at onset of symptoms, survival time, and toxicology results are also presented. Compared with literature reports before 1980, when ruptured cerebral artery aneurysms were reported as the cause of death in approximately 4% to 5% of sudden natural deaths, the results of this study suggest that despite improved diagnostic and therapeutic techniques during the past two decades, morbidity and mortality from ruptured aneurysms remain a significant health problem. © 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.