An aneurysm (AN’u-rizm) is a bulge in a blood vessel, much like a bulge on an over-inflated inner tube. Abdominal aortic aneurysms are caused by a progressive weakening of the aortic wall that causes a dilation, or “ballooning” of the vessel. The new channel may become so big that it compresses the normal flow of blood depriving organs of blood flow and oxygen. Aortic aneurysms usually occur in the abdomen below the kidneys (abdominal aneurysm), but may occur in the chest cavity (thoracic tho-RAS’ik aneurysm). A few occur in the part of the aorta in the chest that is near the heart, and are called thoracic aortic aneurysms. This can happen if the wall of the aorta becomes weakened by build ups of fatty deposits called plaque. This is called atherosclerosis (ath”er-o-skleh-RO’sis). With this weakness, the wall stretches further and the constant pressure from the pumping blood causes it to slowly expand. Aneurysms may also be due to an inherited disease such as the Marfan syndrome.
Causes of Aortic Aneurysm
The common Causes of Aortic Aneurysm :
The exact cause is unknown,
High blood pressure.
Genetic factors .
High cholesterol .
Symptoms of Aortic Aneurysm
Some Symptoms of Aortic Aneurysm :
Chest or back pain.
Pain in the jaw, neck, and upper back.
Rapid heart rate when rising to a standing position .
Nausea and vomiting.
Clammy skin .
Coughing up blood
Coughing, hoarseness, or difficulty breathing .
Treatment of Aortic Aneurysm
Depending on where the aneurysm is located and how complex it is, stenting may be done. A stent-graft is a polyester tube covered by a tubular metal web. The stent-graft is inserted through a small incision in the upper thigh into the aorta. Using x-ray, it is guided through the aorta to the site of the aneurysm. With the stent-graft in place, blood flows through the stent-graft instead of into the aneurysm, eliminating the chance of rupture.
Seek treatment for high blood pressure, syphilis, and other infections.
Eat a healthful diet, one that is low in saturated fat and rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
Surgery to repair an aortic aneurysm is called aneurysmectomy . It involves removing the portion of the aorta that contains the aneurysm and replacing it with a mesh graft.
With aneurysms of the thoracic aorta, the aortic valve may also be affected and need to be replaced or repaired. If the aneurysm involves important branches of the aorta, these vessels may either be repaired or bypassed.