An abdominal aortic aneurysm is a bulge in the lower part of the aorta, the main artery in the human body that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body, which extends through the abdominal area and divides to supply blood to the legs.
The aorta is elastic, like most arteries, which allows it to be filled with blood under high pressure. The development of an aneurysm takes place when the wall of the artery becomes weakened and distended like a balloon and can rupture from the force of normal blood pressure. (The analogy of a bubble in a garden hose would be appropriate when describing an aneurysm). These aneurysms are usually discovered before they produce any symptoms, but they may rupture if they become too large.
Abdominal aortic aneurysms are treated by one of two surgical treatment options — open surgical repair, or endovascular repair.
Most individuals with an abdominal aortic aneurysm do not experience any symptoms. When an abdominal aneurysm grows, however, patients may experience a pulsing feeling located in the abdomen, similar to a heartbeat, pain in the lower back, or tenderness in the chest. Most AAA's are detected in routine medical exams.
There are various risk factors correlated with abdominal aortic aneurysm:
Open Surgical Repair
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