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Sexual Activity as a Risk Factor for the Spontaneous Rupture of Cerebral Aneurysms

Blanke-Roeser, Constantin Dr. med, LLB; Matschke, Jakob; Püschel, Klaus

The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology: June 2016 - Volume 37 - Issue 2 - p 70–73
doi: 10.1097/PAF.0000000000000231
Case Reports

Subarachnoid hemorrhages from ruptured cerebral aneurysms have a high clinical relevance and often lead to death. Approximately 2% to 5% of the people worldwide, even of younger age, are said to have aneurysms at cerebral arteries. In many cases, they remain clinically unapparent for decades. However, there are numerous risk factors for the rupture of an aneurysm, including temporary raises of the blood pressure. Such changes of the blood pressure can be induced even by several everyday behaviors. For example, any sort of sexual activities may cause extensive raises of the blood pressure because of several physical and psychological factors. The term “sexual activity” covers sexual intercourse as well as masturbation. In this article, the remarkable case of a 24-year-old woman with a ruptured cerebral aneurysm in the context of masturbation is presented. It is discussed with respect to the possible pathophysiological effects of sexual activity on cerebral aneurysms.

From the Institute of Legal Medicine, University Medical Center, University of Hamburg, Germany, Hamburg, Germany.

Manuscript received December 21, 2015; accepted January 19, 2016.

The authors report no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Constantin Blanke-Roeser, Dr. med, LLB, Institute of Legal Medicine, University Medical Center, University of Hamburg, Butenfeld 34, D-22529 Hamburg, Germany. E-mail:

© 2016 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.