Young father lucky to be alive after brain aneurysm bursts

A FUNDRAISING campaign is underway to help the family of a young father who has undergone a marathon 15-hour operation to control bleeding on his brain after suffering a ruptured aneurysm.

Joshua McDermott, 26, presented to Albury Base Hospital with blurred vision and a severe headache on Wednesday 10 August.

He was airlifted to the Royal Melbourne Hospital in critical condition later that night after scans showed bleeding on his brain.


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The father-of-one underwent emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain and to control the bleeding.

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It was during this first operation that doctors discovered an aneurysm the size of a golf ball on Mr McDermott’s brain.

The 26-year-old was subsequently diagnosed with a bleeding brain AVM or Arteriovenous Malformation – a tangle of abnormal blood vessels connecting arteries and veins in the brain.

An AVM puts extreme pressure on the walls of the affected arteries and veins, causing them to become thin or weak and, in severe cases, rupture and bleed into the brain.

Surgeons again operated on Mr McDermott on Monday before a third, marathon 15-hour operation on Wednesday after which he suffered a seizure.

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The 26-year-old remains in hospital with his partner by his side and faces at least one more operation on his brain before he can begin on his long road to recovery.

The life-threatening ordeal has split the young family into two different states, with the couple’s four-year-old daughter staying with family in the NSW Riverina.

Mr McDermott, originally from the small NSW farming town of Junee, had moved to Wodonga for work with his family six months ago.

Now, with no income, the family of three is struggling to keep up with rent, bills, hospital and travel costs.

Relatives of the family have set up a Go Fund Me fundraising account online in an effort to help raise money for the family and ease the current financial burden.

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