Alabama man survives 2 brain aneurysms with lifesaving treatment

Published: Feb. 14, 2022 at 3:07 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 14, 2022 at 3:10 PM EST
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA/Gray News) - A Prattville man is alive today thanks to a new aneurysm procedure offered at Baptist South in Montgomery.

WSFA reported that in January 2021, 30-year-old Taylor Scroggins collapsed after one of two aneurysms in his brain ruptured.

“I’m very happy to be alive,” Taylor Scroggins said.

He said he doesn’t remember the months leading up to the incident, but his wife Megan Scroggins does. Megan Scroggins said he had been suffering from sudden severe headaches, vomiting, and a stiff neck.

The couple went to Urgent Care to see what was wrong, but to their surprise, Taylor Scroggins was told to rest and was cleared to go home. Later that same night was when he collapsed.

“He stood up really fast, he yelled out, and he grabbed his head and he fell back wards,” Megan Scroggins said. “He passed out.”

Taylor Scroggins was rushed to Baptist South in Montgomery for treatment. A blood vessel inside of his brain had burst. The blood build-up inside of his skull was increasing pressure on his brain.

If the ruptured aneurysm was not treated it could lead to brain damage or death.

“Before Dr. Balasetti came in the room, I had already told myself he was going to die,” Megan Scroggins said. “I just expected that was what was going to happen.”

It was a fate Megan Scroggins had accepted until Dr. Vamshi Balasetti offered hope through a procedure known as endovascular coiling. A catheter is used to reach the aneurysm in the brain and platinum coils are used to block blood flow to the aneurysm.

“This is a more minimally invasive approach where we are going from within the blood vessel either in the leg or the hand and we’re not opening the skull so we are treating it from within the blood vessels,” Balasetti said.

Balasetti was able to successfully treat both of the aneurysms in Taylor Scroggins’ brain.

“He was an 80% risk for mortality,” Balasetti said. “80% chance that he couldn’t make it.”

After nearly a month in the hospital recovering, Taylor Scroggins spent several weeks at a rehab facility in Atlanta.

“From there, we were able to get him to a point where he was able to communicate with us,” Megan Scroggins said. “He walked out of there and every month from there he is improving.”

The entire time, Megan Scroggins was pregnant with their first child. Taylor Scroggins was able to recover just in time to be present for the birth of their now 8 month old son Reed.

“He tells Reed all the time he came back for him,” Megan Scroggins said. “Dr. Balasetti, I told him before, he’s the hero in our household. He gave us a second chance at being a family.”

Ballaseti is the first doctor to perform the coiling procedure at Baptist Health. The treatment was first offered just a month before Taylor Scroggins was admitted, making him the first patient to receive it.

According to Balasetti, one in every 50 healthy adults will suffer from an aneurysm, and about half of those people will not survive.

Baptist South is the only hospital in central Alabama to offer the coiling procedure. Dr. Balasetti said if you experience a sudden severe headache partnered with vomiting to go to the emergency room to be evaluated.

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