Abdominal aortic aneurysm

Common Name(s)

Abdominal aortic aneurysm

An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is when the lower part of the aorta becomes enlarged, like a balloon. The aorta is the largest artery in the body. It carries blood from the heart down along the backbone where it splits into many smaller arteries that bring blood to all of the organs. Aneurysm is a general term that describes an enlargement of any blood vessel in the body. Aneurysms usually develop slowly over time and may not cause problems until they become so enlarged that they can rupture.

Smaller AAAs generally do not cause symptoms. Larger AAAs can cause symptoms such as a pulsating feeling near the belly button, deep and constant abdominal pain, or back pain. Rupture of an aortic aneurysm is a medical emergency. If an aortic aneurysm ruptures, symptoms include vomiting, intense pain, excessive sweating, a drop in blood pressure, fainting, and shortness of breath.

AAAs can be caused by stiffening of the artery walls due to plaque build up (atherosclerosis), infection of the aorta, or connective tissue diseases. Risk factors for the development of AAAs are increased in individuals who smoke, are male, or have a family history of aneurysms.

A doctor can perform many tests to diagnose this condition. Possible tests include imaging by abdominal ultrasound, chest X-ray, and MRI. Treatment options will vary depending on the size of the aneurysm. For smaller aneurysms, it may be better to wait and watch before seeking surgery. For larger aneurysms that are at risk of rupturing, surgery is usually the best treatment. Talk to your doctor about which of the current treatment options is right for you.

Source: Advocacy organizations associated with the condition.

 

Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Abdominal aortic aneurysm" for support, advocacy or research.

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Canadian Marfan Association

Increasing awareness, saving lives, and improving the quality of life for patients, their families, and medical professionals affected by Marfan syndrome, genetic aortic disorders, and related connective tissue disorders through national programs of education, support, and research.

Last Updated: 22 Jan 2013

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Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Abdominal aortic aneurysm" for support, advocacy or research.

Logo
Canadian Marfan Association

Increasing awareness, saving lives, and improving the quality of life for patients, their families, and medical professionals affected by Marfan syndrome, genetic aortic disorders, and related connective tissue disorders through national programs of education, support, and research.

http://www.marfan.ca

Last Updated: 22 Jan 2013

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Scientific Literature

Articles from the PubMed Database

Research articles describe the outcome of a single study. They are the published results of original research.
The terms "Abdominal aortic aneurysm" returned 1825 free, full-text research articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Comparative effectiveness of open surgery versus endovascular repair for hemodynamically stable and unstable ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm.
 

Author(s): Tiehao Wang, Jichun Zhao, Ding Yuan, Yukui Ma, Bin Huang, Yi Yang, Guojun Zeng

Journal: Medicine (Baltimore). 2018 Jul;97(27):e11313.

 

Several observational studies and randomized trials have compared open surgery (OS) and endovascular aortic repair (EVAR) for ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm (rAAA). However, none of these studies addressed optimal management of hemodynamically (hd) unstable patients. Our objective ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Abdominal compartment syndrome and ruptured aortic aneurysm: Validation of a predictive test (SCA-AAR).
 

Author(s): Betty Leclerc, Lucie Salomon Du Mont, Anne-Laure Parmentier, Guillaume Besch, Simon Rinckenbach

Journal: Medicine (Baltimore). 2018 Jun;97(25):e11066.

 

The abdominal compartment syndrome (ACS) has been clearly identified as being one of the main causes of mortality after ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm (rAAA). The ACS is defined as a sustained intra-abdominal pressure > 20 mm Hg associated with a new organ dysfunction or failure. ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Evaluation of the relationship between plasma lipids and abdominal aortic aneurysm: A Mendelian randomization study.
 

Author(s): Lu-Chen Weng, Nicholas S Roetker, Pamela L Lutsey, Alvaro Alonso, Weihua Guan, James S Pankow, Aaron R Folsom, Lyn M Steffen, Nathan Pankratz, Weihong Tang

Journal:

 

Studies have reported that higher circulating levels of total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and lower of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol may be associated with increased risk of abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). Whether dyslipidemia causes AAA ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Reviews from the PubMed Database

Review articles summarize what is currently known about a disease. They discuss research previously published by others.
The terms "Abdominal aortic aneurysm" returned 177 free, full-text review articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Do psychological harms result from being labelled with an unexpected diagnosis of abdominal aortic aneurysm or prostate cancer through screening? A systematic review.
 

Author(s): Anne R Cotter, Kim Vuong, Linda Mustelin, Yi Yang, Malika Rakhmankulova, Colleen J Barclay, Russell P Harris

Journal:

 

A potential psychological harm of screening is unexpected diagnosislabelling. We need to know the frequency and severity of this harm to make informed decisions about screening. We asked whether current evidence allows an estimate of any psychological harm of labelling. As case studies, ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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MicroRNAs and Current Concepts on the Pathogenesis of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm.
 

Author(s): Edwaldo Edner Joviliano, Mauricio Serra Ribeiro, Emanuel Junior Ramos Tenorio

Journal: Braz J Cardiovasc Surg. ;32(3):215-224.

 

Abdominal aortic aneurysm is an important cause of morbidity and mortality in the elderly. Currently, the only way to prevent rupture and death related to abdominal aortic aneurysms is through surgical intervention. Endovascular treatment is associated with less morbidity than conventional ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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[Patient volume and quality in surgery for abdominal aortic aneurysm].
 

Author(s): Astrid Austvoll-Dahlgren, Vigdis Underland, Gyri Hval Straumann, Louise Forsetlund

Journal:

 

BACKGROUND Patient volume is assumed to affect quality, whereby complex procedures are best performed by those who perform them frequently. We have conducted a systematic review of the research on the association between patient volume and quality of vascular surgery. In this article ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Clinical Trial Information This information is provided by ClinicalTrials.gov

The Inter and Intra Reliability of Cardiopulmonary Exercise Testing in Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Patients
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

 

Last Updated: 21 Nov 2016

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Magnetic Resonance Elastography in Patients With Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

 

Last Updated: 13 Nov 2017

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