Aortic aneurysm is a disease that results in a balloon-like dilatation of the aorta [main blood vessel supplying blood to entire body), and it keeps on expanding over time.
Aortic aneurysm and aortic dissection are serious health problems. Rupture of aortic aneurysm is one of the leading causes of death around the world, and 50% of the patients die even before reaching the hospital.
Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm [AAA]- Involving the part of aorta in the abdominal cavity
Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm (TAA]- Involving the part of aorta in the chest
Thoraco-Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (TAAA]- Involving parts of aorta in the chest as well as abdomen
Sudden, severe abdominal pain
Severe back pain
Feeling of swelling/heaviness in stomach
Decreased hunger sensation/appetite
The diagnosis may be confused with renal stone, gastritis, hernia or lumbar spine disease.
Consult a qualified vascular-endovascular surgeon immediately.
Investigations needed include abdominal ultrasonography/CT scan (as advised by the vascular surgeon)
If neglected, an aortic aneurysm can get ruptured in a process similar to an expanding balloon, leading to on-the-spot death of the patient.
The patient can even die before reaching the hospital.
Medical treatment: Patients with an aneurysm smaller than 5.5 cm in men and smaller than 5 cm in women are usually treated by medications and 6-monthly serial evaluation with CT scan. If the aneurysm is seen to be increasing in size, the patient is advised to undergo therapeutic intervention.
Who needs urgent intervention?
Endovascular aortic repair is emerging as a standard of care for both simple and complex aneurysms.