Innovative, Effective Treatment of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms
Franciscan Health has a long tradition of excellence in heart and vascular care and offers sophisticated, accurate diagnosis and leading-edge treatments for patients with all types of aortic disease. Our physicians have skill and experience with a variety of treatments for abdominal aortic aneurysms.
How is an abdominal aortic aneurysm treated?
Our physicians use minimally invasive or endovascular techniques in most treatments. Our main goal is to evaluate patients and design a personalized treatment plan that decreases the risk of aneurysm rupture.
Treatment is determined according to the severity and size of a patient’s abdominal aortic aneurysm and includes:
- Medical Therapy: Medications used to manage abdominal aortic disease include drugs to control cholesterol and blood pressure.
- Endovascular Stent Graft Repair: This minimally invasive procedure involves the placement of a covered stent to reline the aneurysm and to keep it from bursting. Stent graft repair is less invasive than open surgery and often results in faster recovery times.
- Open Surgical Aneurysm Repair: During this procedure, the surgeon makes an incision to access the abdominal aortic aneurysm. The diseased portion of the aorta is replaced with an aortic graft (a durable tube) sewn in place to replace the weakened segment of artery and keep it from bursting.
What is an abdominal aortic aneurysm?
An abdominal aortic aneurysm is an enlargement of the lower part of the aorta that extends through the abdominal area. The aorta is the main blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body. Like most arteries, the aorta is elastic, which allows it to be filled with blood under high pressure. An aneurysm develops when the wall of the artery becomes weakened and distended like a balloon.
Aneurysms usually are discovered before they produce symptoms, such as back pain, but they may rupture if they become too large. Since a ruptured aneurysm is extremely dangerous and can cause life-threatening bleeding, aneurysms are best corrected by an operation before this happens.