Aortic and Peripheral Aneurysms
What are Aortic and Peripheral Aneurysms?
An aneurysm is an enlarged or weakened area in an artery. Aortic Aneurysms are the most common and occur in the aorta, the body’s largest artery. Peripheral aneurysms can occur in any artery besides your aorta, with the most common being the popliteral artery.
What are the Symptoms?
many aneurysms are asymptomatic and are only discovered when undergoing tests for a different condition. However, the following symptoms may occur:
- Chest and/or back pain, often described as a tearing or ripping sensation
- A pulsating bulge or strong pulse in the abdomen
- Feeling of fullness with minimal consumption
- Rapid heart rate/breathing, dizziness
This condition can cause blood clots to form. If a piece of one breaks off, it can cut off blood flow anywhere in the body and cause a stroke, heart attach or a vital organ to stop functioning.This is an emergency situation and requires immediate medical care.
Symptoms of peripheral aneurysms include:
- A throbbing lump in neck, arm, leg or groin
- Numbness or pain that radiates in leg or arm
- leg cramping with exercise
- Sores that won’t heal on fingers or toes
How is it Diagnosed?
To diagnose an aneurysm, your doctor will give you a physical exam and have you undergo imaging tests. These can include a CT scan, MRI and/or an ultrasound.
How are they Treated?
Aneurysms can be dangerous because they can cause a sudden blockage, and so, generally, they require surgery. If the clot is small, your doctor may monitor it until surgery is deemed necessary. Surgery may be done with endovascular repair or open surgical repair, depending on the specifics of your case. If a blood clot is blocking the aneurysm, thrombolytic therapy – medications that break up the clot – may be used prior to surgery.Previous Page Last Review Date: May 20, 2019