|December 12, 2012||Posted by admin under Aneurysm|
Until fairly recently, a stomach aneurysm had to be removed through a large incision running from the breastbone to the pelvis. Nowadays, doctors thread a woven polyester tube called a stented graft through a small cut made in the groin. The tube becomes a lining for the blood vessel at the point where it threatens to burst. This less invasive procedure typically involves only a 2 day hospital stay.
A stomach aneurysm is believed to be largely caused by atherosclerosis, a common arterial disease, where cholesterol deposits and plaque forms on the inner surfaces of the arteries preventing blood flow. Complicating factors such as high blood pressure may contribute to the development of an aneurysm. Aneurysms can also be genetic.
There are many causes of stomach aneurysms. Some include genetic predisposition to the condition, weakening of the artery wall because of build up of plaque or infection. High cholesterol, smoking and obesity also increase the risk factors.
Sign and symptoms
This deadly condition can build up over a period of years without any warning signs. Although, there are often no symptoms, some patients report a pulsating sensation in the abdomen. Like heart disease, stomach aneurysm can be considered a silent killer. However, if discovered in time, the surgical procedure available to treat this disorder is highly effective.
In advanced cases, pain may be present in the stomach and lower back. Often aneurysms do not cause symptoms until blood begins to leak from the ballooning wall of the artery. Your doctor may feel the pulsating vessel on routine examination of the stomach.
An aneurysm scan uses an ultra-sound wand to detect aneurysms in the abdominal aortic arteries. It is the only noninvasive test that allows doctors to identify aneurysms before they rupture. Surgery to repair aneurysms can increase survival rates to 99 percent. The risk of the stomach aneurysm rupturing increases as it grows.
Doctors can take several courses of action depending on the size and cause of the aneurysm. If it comes from infection, treatment with antibiotics and potentially surgical procedures may be in order. Surgery that involves patching the outside of the artery with Gortex or polyester is another possibility, as is replacing the area with an artery section from another area. Newer less invasive treatments involve a stent inserted inside the artery.
This type of aneurysm is more common in men than women and happens even more frequently in people with heart disease. Aneurysms are bulges in the artery walls. When they rupture, the results can be dangerous. Around 30,000 Americans die from ruptured aneurysms annually. In addition to the expansion of the arterial wall, an aneurysm generally accumulates cholesterol, calcium, and even small blood clots.
Anyone over age 60 should consider taking the aneurysm test that has cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure or smokes. Everyone over age 50 who has a family history of heart disease should also consider talking it over with their doctor about the risk of developing stomach aneurysm.
Those who are at the greatest risk of aneurysm are people who smoke, adults who have high blood pressure, or high cholesterol levels, and those with a family history of aneurysms. Since an aneurysm usually has no symptoms they can go unnoticed for quite some time. Many are diagnosed during testing for other conditions when X-rays, MRIs or CT scans are ordered.
If you are at risk for developing an aneurysm and smoke consider quitting. According to health studies, smoking causes blood vessels to narrow. When this happens, the risk of stomach aneurysm greatly increases.
Stomach Aortic Aneurysm
The aorta carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body. A stomach aneurysm occurs when a weak area along the aorta swells like a balloon. A common site for an aortic aneurysm is below the kidneys just above the junction of the abdomen and arteries to the legs. If left untreated, it can burst, which can lead to shock, loss of consciousness, and death.