An aneurysm is a weak spot in a blood vessel. The weakened area bulges and becomes filled with blood, and is vulnerable to bursting, causing internal bleeding and disrupted blood flow to vital internal organs and limbs. Aneurysms are most common in people age 65 and over. They occur more frequently in men and smokers.
Diagnosis / Screening: Ultrasound Angiography
Occasionally, an aneurysm may be discovered inadvertently during abdominal palpation in a routine physical exam, or as a secondary finding on an imaging test ordered for another purpose. Routine screenings by ultrasound angiography are recommended for men ages 65–75 who have ever smoked (lifetime smoking history of 100 or more cigarettes).
Treatment: Endovascular Stent Graft Aortic Aneurysm Repair
In this minimally invasive, image-guided procedure, a stent graft (or tube) is placed in the aorta using a catheter inserted through a very small incision in the groin. This strengthens the artery and reduces the potential for rupturing.