A young woman named Aminah Jennifa Ahmed passed away this week from what medical examiners believe to be a brain aneurysm. The bright 22-year-old had only just graduated from the University of Texas with joint degrees in Business and Biology, yet her graduation celebrations with friends and family were tragically cut short with her sudden death. Canada Journal News reported this Saturday, May 23, 2015, that this story has gone viral in light of graduation season this time of year, and has sparked concerns on how to identify the threat of a potential brain aneurysm.
Although brain aneurysms may strike without any signs or warning, Aminah’s grieving family members say that the 22-year-old college graduate had been complaining of serious headaches that day. Ahmed was said to have been suffering from sharp pains and stomachaches on Diploma Day, but her loved ones thought it might have just been graduation jitters or simply too much excitement. That night, the young woman passed away in her sleep.
“There was zero symptoms, zero signs, zero everything [before graduation day,]” shared Aminah’s father, Shamsul Ahmed, in a statement with the press. “She said she had a headache and throwing up, and that’s it.”
Less than an hour after walking across the stage on graduation day and finishing taking pictures with friends and family, Aminah Jennifa Ahmed complained of unexpected head pain. She thought it might have been too much stress from school. Her friends said she vomited shortly afterwards, and then reportedly threw up again in the car on the way back home. The 22-year-old took a nap on the couch once at their house in Arlington, but Shamsul said his daughter was experiencing difficulty breathing. He knew something was very wrong.
“You hold on to that faith and you know you’re OK with that, but then, at the same time, your world is just kind of tumbling,” the devastated father added. The family’s shock and pain after their loved one’s death on graduation day are said to have not fully settled in yet, said a source close to Shamsul.
According to The Spread It News, there has been exact confirmation as to what migiht have caused Ahmed’s death. However, it is currently cited by doctors that a brain aneurysm is the likely cause. Blurred vision, vomiting, dizziness, and intense headaches can be warning signs of this health scare, but some aneurysms come with no warning at all. The 22-year-old college graduates remember Aminah as a smart, kind, and caring person who loved to help out in her community through charity work.
In light of her sudden and tragic passing, her family has assisted with a new project called “Aminah Sees.” The program was first created by Aminah Jennifa Ahmed herself, who was trying to develop new ways to fundraise money to pay for needed eye surgeries of children in Bangladesh. One doctor noted that brain aneurysms are quite uncommon in young people, so the 22-year-old’s unexpected death on graduation day is the exception, not the rule.
“It’s not very common in young patients; usually our average age range is in that 40-60-year-old range,” Dr. Babu Welch, of UT Southwestern, noted this week. “If you have two family members generally speaking that have had aneurysms, and if you have a bad headache, you probably should be screened.”
The exact cited causes of brain aneurysms are not fully known. As for potential warning signs, Dr. Welch notes that people should take notice if they have recurring weakness, problems with balance and vision, or recurring body weakness. “A headache, a little bit of double vision, a little bit of hand weakness or numbness that comes and goes away,” she said. Of course, a headache—even a very bad one—is not a surefire sign that an aneurysm is approaching. “A bad headache by itself in a young person isn’t a reason for an aneurysm concern.” The University of Texas and Aminah’s fellow graduates are no doubt keeping the young woman’s memory and noble efforts in school, life, and community in their thoughts and prayers this week.