(AAA; Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm; Aneurysm, Abdominal Aortic; Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm; Aneurysm, Thoracic Aortic)
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- High blood pressure
- Arteriosclerosis, atherosclerosis
- Inherited connective tissue defects such as Marfan syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome )
- Polyarteritis nodosa
- Bacterial endocarditis
- Age: 60 or older
- History of heart attack
- Family members with aneurysms, particularly male children of an affected mother
- Infectious aortitis
- Great vessel arteritis, also known as Takayasu’s disease
- Injury to the aorta, from either a motor vehicle accident or a stab wound
- Pain in the abdomen or in the lower back
- Boring, gnawing, or constant pain occurring over hours or days
- Sudden onset of severe stabbing pain
- Unusual sensation of pulsing in the abdomen
- Cough, shortness of breath
- Difficulty swallowing
- Coughing up blood
- Weight loss
- Chest pain
- Eat a healthful diet that is low in saturated fat and rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
Don't smoke. If you smoke,
- The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends that men aged 65-75 who have ever smoked be screened once for abdominal aortic aneurysm with ultrasound . This is a painless procedure that gives a picture of the abdomen using sound waves. Early detection of abdominal aortic aneurysm in this group has been shown to reduce mortality from this condition.
- Maintain a healthy weight .
- Begin a safe exercise program with the advice of your doctor.
- Seek treatment for high blood pressure, syphilis, and other infections.
- If you have Marfan syndrome, see your doctor regularly for monitoring and CT scans.
American Heart Association http://www.heart.org
The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov
Canadian Cardiovascular Society http://www.ccs.ca
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada http://www.heartandstroke.ca
Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated April 18, 2013. Accessed May 8, 2013.
Braunwald E. Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine . 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: WB Saunders Company; 2001.
Sabiston DC, Townsend CM. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery . 16th ed. Philadelphia, PA: WB Saunders Company; 2001.
Screening for abdominal aortic aneurysm: recommendation statement. US Preventive Services Task Force website. Available at: http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/uspstf05/aaascr/aaars.htm. Published February 2005. Accessed May 8, 2013.
Thoracic aortic aneurysm (AAA). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated April 16, 2013. Accessed May 8, 2013.
7/21/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Thompson SG, Ashton HA, Gao L, Scott RA, Multicentre Aneurysm Screening Study Group. Screening men for abdominal aortic aneurysm: 10 year mortality and cost effectiveness results from the randomised Multicentre Aneurysm Screening Study. BMJ . 2009;338:b2307.