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MICHIGAN CARDIOLOGY
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OF THE MEDICAL REPORT
Kirit Patel, MD
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland
Cardiologist
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THE FACTS ABOUT Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms

Background

The abdominal aorta supplies blood to the lower part of the body. Located just below the abdomen, it splits into two branches that
carry blood into each of the legs.

Podcast Posted: 10/30/2007
Duration:
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When a weakened area of the abdominal aorta expands or balloons out, it is called an abdominal aortic aneurysm. A significant health
risk if the aneurysm should burst or rupture – this condition can lead to severe internal bleeding, shock, and, in the most severe cases, death.

The 13th leading cause of death in the United States, an abdominal aortic aneurysm is one of the most challenging emergency medical situations. Fifty percent of patients that come to an emergency room with this condition will not survive.



Until recently, the most common surgical method for treating an abdominal aortic aneurysm was traditional open aneurysm repair — wherein a surgeon makes a large incision in the abdomen, cuts out the damaged part of the aorta, and sews a graft in its place.

Today, physicians are turning to a promising new alternative for treating ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysms. It’s called an “Endograft,” or endovascular aneurysm repair. A minimally-invasive surgical treatment, this procedure allows the surgeon to make a small incision in the groin, and then insert a stent graft through a catheter placed in the femoral artery. When properly positioned, the stent graft opens up and seals off the aneurysm so that blood can flow through the endograft — instead of the aneurysm.

ADVANTAGES
“This image-guided endovascular surgical approach is saving thousands of lives,” says Kirit Patel, MD, SJMO. “There are many advantages to the endograft, including less post-operative discomfort due to smaller incisions, shorter hospitalization, and faster recovery. Patients can usually return to normal activities
within 4-6 weeks after surgery.”

Additionally, this technique also eliminates some of the challenges associated with conventional surgery – such as clamping of the
aorta.

CAUTIONS
Most abdominal aortic aneurysms are asymptomatic and remain undetected prior to rupture. Aneurysms that have been diagnosed prior to rupture should be measured, closely monitored, and evaluated for treatment.

Not all patients can be treated with the endovascular surgical approach. It is important to consult with your physician to determine whether you are a candidate for this procedure.

REFERRAL
Please contact the SJMO physician referral line at 800.372.6094 to find a SJMO cardiologist near you.

 

THE MEDICAL REPORT LIBRARY:

MICHIGAN CARDIOLOGY
 
 
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