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Abdominal aortic aneurysm


Subject Article Writing Pages 3 Style APA


Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm is a condition inside the body that comes as a result of an enlargement of the lower main vessel that supplies blood to the aorta (Chaikof, Dalman, Eskandari, Jackson, and Mansour 2018). Damaging the aorta, or its rupture will lead to an abysmal health deterioration in the body as it is the largest blood vessel in the body. The disease occur in the lower part of the abdomen with the Aorta being the most affected part. Aorta is one of the main blood vessels in which blood passes through to the other parts of the body. During the prime stages of the condition, the symptoms are usually very minimal and grow bigger as the situation gets fonder.

 Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) is accompanied by the following symptoms (Peach, Romaine, Holt, Thompson, Bradley, 2016):

  • Partial Pain and discomfort in the belly, kidney, or the lower side of the back which tend to become constant as the condition prevails.
  • Loss of Weight and fever in the case where the AAA was a result of an infection.
  • Painful toe; this occurs when the Aneurysm initiates a blood clot that blocks the flow of blood towards the legs.
  • Tremendous drop in the pressure of blood, regular signs of shock and sudden tingling pain come as a result of a ruptured aneurysm.

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm can be caused by;

  • Infections in the aorta for example syphilis, staphylococcus or salmonella.
  • Inflammation of the arteries located in the neck and head which will in turn lead to narrowing of the vessels which support the flow of blood hence resulting into severe headaches, in some cases it would lead to loss of vision, a general condition referred to as Giant Cell arteritis.
  • Genetic disorders of the connective tissues for example heart tissue, tissues in the bones, cartilage or blood vessels. These diseases include; Marfan syndrome, Turners Syndrome, Polysistic Kidney Disease, Ehlers-danlos Syndrome. (Peach, Romaine, Wilson, Holt, Thompson, Hinchliffe, Bradley, 2016)

Magnetic Resonanse Imaging (MRI) and Computed Tomography Angiography (CTA) are the most perfect methods of diagnosis as per the patient’s case study based to the fact that they have a high resolution power, therefore will help bring a clear image of the damaged tissue (Zhu, Tian, Leach, Liu, Lu, 2017). A Magnetic Resonance Machine consists of a very powerful machine in which the patient is lain, then signals in magnetic form and radio frequencies are sent into the body and the signals relayed back in form of an image. MRI is adhesively applicable to locating damage in the soft tissues. In this case it’s the most suitable way of diagnosis. When using an MRI, certain factors should be considered (Hermann, 2016);

  • In case a patient has implantable devices in their body, it’s advisable that he should not undergo the MRI diagnosis since the machine contains a magnet within it. These ‘implantable’ devices include eye implants, a pacemaker, and artificial joints.
  • In case the patient has an anxiety disorder, it’s advisable for the doctor to give some sedation since the entry space into the MRI machine is small and tend to be scary. It’s also noisy inside the MRI machine.

The biggest difference between Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Computed Tomography Angiography (CTA), is that MRI uses radio waves while CTA uses X-rays. Other differences include (Mayr, Klug, Reinstadler, Feistritzer, 2018);

  • CTAs are less expensive compared to MRIs hence being the commonly used machine.
  • MRIs have a potential reaction to metals as a result of magnet composition, while CTA have a possible reaction as a result of using dyes.
  • Computed Tomography Angiography is faster compared to Magnetic Resonanse Imaging.
  • MRI capture images that assist in observing whether there are abnormal tissues inside the patient’s body while CTA generally institute pictures of the skeletal structure, organs and tissues.
  • Images captured by Magnetic Resonance Imaging tend to be more detailed as compared to those captured under the Computed Tomography Angiography.

In case Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm is detected in the patient’s body, An Abdominal Ultra Sound is also an applicable method for its diagnosis. With this diagnostic test, the patient lies on the table and a transducer is moved around the abdomen. Unlike MRIs, the Abdominal Ultra Sound uses sound waves to send the captured images to the computer screen. (Zhu, Haraldsson, Faraji, Owens, Gasper, Ahn, Saloner, 2016)

The Pre-surgical intervention towards patients suffering from Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm entails pre-operative cardiorespiratory fitness which is always advisable and the most preferable option when the AAA size goes past 5.5cm (Ross, Blair, Arena, Church, Després, 2016). Generally, fitness is a vital factor when it comes to this phase of patient treatment. When the patient undergoes cardiorespiratory fitness before the abdominal surgery, chances of recovery after the surgery are very high. However, long periods of not being physically active after the surgical process will lead to psychological distress, cardiopulmonary deconditioning, and loss of mass and also pulmonary complications. Other pre-surgical treatments include; quitting smoking, controlling fat intake and also controlling the consumption of sugar into the body. Surgical intervention include open surgery and Endovascular stent graft. The latter involves making an incision in the groin to expose the femoral artery then placing a wire in the vessel in which a stent-graft into the aneurysm area and blood flows through it instead of the aorta. Failure to treat this disease leads to sudden collapsing which would instantly lead to death.

The patient needs to do regular exercise before the surgical treatment and also after proper healing. Regular visits to the hospital is a requirement once the disease has been diagnosed. The patient is encouraged to keep up with proper diet, eat food less in cholesterol and avoid a lot more sugary food. The prescribed drugs should be well taken and ensure a comeback to the hospital once the condition fully stabilizes for further check-up. Family members tend to incur costs in treating the disease. The patient requires maximum support from the family members including providing emotional support to the patient.


Chaikof, E. L., Dalman, R. L., Eskandari, M. K., Jackson, B. M., Lee, W. A., Mansour, M. A., … & Oderich, G. S. (2018). The Society for Vascular Surgery practice guidelines on the care of patients with an abdominal aortic aneurysm, 67(1), 2-77.

Peach, G., Romaine, J., Holt, P. J. E., Thompson, M. M., Bradley, C., & Hinchliffe, R. J. (2016). Quality of life, symptoms and treatment satisfaction in patients with aortic aneurysm using new abdominal aortic aneurysm‐specific patient‐reported outcome measures. British Journal of Surgery, 103(8), 1012-1019.

Peach, G., Romaine, J., Wilson, A., Holt, P. J. E., Thompson, M. M., Hinchliffe, R. J., & Bradley, C. (2016). Design of new patient‐reported outcome measures to assess quality of life, symptoms and treatment satisfaction in patients with abdominal aortic aneurysm, 103(8), 1003-1011.

Zhu, C., Tian, B., Leach, J. R., Liu, Q., Lu, J., Chen, L., … & Hope, M. D. (2017). Non-contrast 3D black blood MRI for abdominal aortic aneurysm surveillance, 27(5), 1787-1794.

Hermann, K. G. (2016). SP0117 When and How To Use MRI in Clinical Practice.

Mayr, A., Klug, G., Reinstadler, S. J., Feistritzer, H. J., Reindl, M., Kremser, C., … & Metzler, B. (2018). European radiology, 28(11), 4625-4634.

Zhu, C., Haraldsson, H., Faraji, F., Owens, C., Gasper, W., Ahn, S., … & Saloner, D. (2016). Isotropic 3D black blood MRI of abdominal aortic aneurysm wall and intraluminal thrombus, 34(1), 18-25.

Ross, R., Blair, S. N., Arena, R., Church, T. S., Després, J. P., Franklin, B. A., … & Myers, J. (2016). Importance of assessing cardiorespiratory fitness in clinical practice, 134(24), e653-e699.

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