Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm – What is an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA)?
An aneurysm is a blood vessel whose wall has become weak and allows the blood vessel to expand and bulge out. Most aneurysms have no definite cause, although most are associated with atherosclerosis. The most common site is in the abdominal aorta, the large artery that carries blood from the heart through the abdomen to the legs. This is called an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). Aneurysms sometimes occur in the branches of the aorta that go to the legs (iliac arteries) and in the legs themselves in the popliteal artery, the main artery that runs behind the knee.
How are AAA diagnosed?
Aneurysms in the abdominal area enlarge slowly over a period of years. In theory, this means they can be discovered before they cause problems. Unfortunately, aneurysms frequently produce no symptoms before they leak or rupture that would prompt a person to seek medical attention. But they can be picked up at a regular physical examination. For example, an abdominal aneurysm often feels like a tender, throbbing lump under the skin and the patient or an examining doctor may discover the pulsating mass. Even if the lump cannot be felt, the doctor can often hear suspicious sounds of turbulent blood flow through a stethoscope on the abdomen.
When an examining doctor discovers signs suspicious of an abdominal aneurysm, an abdominal X-ray or ultrasound examination may reveal its size and location. More advanced tests, like a CT scan and M.R.I., are usually included in the diagnostic workup. Some vascular specialists, ourselves included, recommend that ultrasound, a simple, quick, non-invasive test, be used to screen people at high risk of abdominal aneurysm. Once an aneurysm has been diagnosed an arteriogram (angiogram) may be required to plan treatment.
Our offices are conveniently located in Santa Clarita, Van Nuys, Tarzana, Burbank and soon to be, Antelope Valley. For more information go to www.vvahealth.com or call us at 661-505-7079.
ADVERTISE WITH US
It warms our hearts to look back over 30 years of doing business in the Santa Clarita Valley. On our cover this month we feature images of some of our memorable covers. We started the Santa Clarita Magazine in 1989 with hope in our hearts and the sole intent to...
The Santa Clarita Valley has been our home for the last three decades and we are so grateful to the community and to our advertisers for their continued support. When the publication first began, we were located in the Plaza Posada in Newhall. The City of Santa...
Santa Clarita is our City! Each member of our staff, the publishers and our interns all call Santa Clarita home, as well as the other 220,000 residents. Santa Clarita is the place I have called home since I was six years old and it is where I raise my family. In the...
ABOUT THE MAGAZINE
Santa Clarita Magazine has set a high standard for excellence in advertising for over 29 years. A family owned and operated business, Santa Clarita Magazine has grown with the Santa Clarita Valley since 1990 and become the #1 place to advertise locally.