The Nerazzurri were 2-0 down at the break and risked more, but Rodrigo Palacio came off the bench to set up one goal and score two more.
"We got off to an absolutely terrible start, aided by the crazy atmosphere in the stadium," conceded Stramaccioni.
"Catania started well, while we made awful mistakes on the two goals we conceded. At a time like this, if the team did not have real grit, then it would've been incredibly difficult to come back from that.
"Juan Jesus made a mistake on the opening goal, but I like to point out he is young and shook that off to play a very good second half, proving his character.
"It is an extremely important victory, as it was earned against the form team in Serie A right now. I don't know how many people would've bet on us winning at half-time
"We gave it everything we had in the second half. Fredy Guarin had an ankle problem and was trying to grit his teeth to help the team, but I decided not to risk him anymore."