Texas teenager survives rare bleeding stroke

The Central Texas teen was likely born with a brain aneurysm that ruptured the summer of his 10th birthday. Now, four years later, he's back on track thanks to modern medicine.

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Summer break is especially meaningful for a Central Texas teenager.

Four years ago, during his summer break, Ryan Silva of China Springs began feeling dizzy, weak, and fatigued.

Soon after, Silva began excessively vomiting and his state took a turn for the worse.

A doctor discovered Ryan had suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm and he was given less than a 1% chance of survival.

"At the time, there was no reasoning. It just -- out of the blue -- he had one, more than likely from birth and then it just decided to rupture on that day," said Silva's father Matthew.

He was eventually transferred to Children’s Health Center for Cerebrovascular Disorders in Dallas.

"Brain aneurysm in the child is rare. We see way more cases in adults," said Dr. Rafael de Oliveira Sillero, a pediatric neurosurgeon at Children’s Health and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurological Surgery at UT Southwestern.

Silva needed multiple life-saving surgeries over the course of his hospital stay.

According to Dr. Sillero, the good news is that children tend to recover better than adults.

"Their brand is developing, and they have so much energy and they just recover better," said Sillero.

Matthew Silva shares his son's story to warn parents about the symptoms of a bleeding stroke, which include a sudden, severe headache near the back of the head. Many have described this as the “worst headache of your life.”

"The biggest thing that we take away, that we try to stress to everyone that we talked to, is that if your child is expressing that they have a major headache, it's out of the norm and it's just a major headache, go get them to the ER," said Silva.

Aneurysms in children have no symptoms until they rupture, causing bleeding into the space around the brain.

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