Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA)
Abdominal aortic aneurysm, or AAA, is a silent killer, particularly of men. AAA is a weakening of the wall of the aorta, which is the biggest artery in the body. AAA grows slowly and as it does the aortic wall gets thinner and weaker and thinner and weaker, in a vicious cycle until if left untreated the aorta ruptures. It is most often completely asymptomatic and unfortunately still to this day usually found by accident when a patient has a CT scan or x-ray for some other reason. AAA is most often associated with a history of cigarette smoking but there are genetic factors at work as well. AAA is the 13th leading killer of men, so any man over the age of 65 who has ever smoked should have a screening ultrasound to look for AAA. If you have a first degree family member (parent or sibling) that had AAA then you should get checked too. Dr Tapper was the first surgeon on the Treasure Coast to perform the endovascular AAA repair (EVAR) and he has served as a consultant to leading graft manufacturers. If you have AAA, then you need to see him. His experience can be trusted.
Aortic Aneurysm Slideshow
Aortic Aneurysm Repair
Video of Dr. Tapper doing endovascular repair of aortic dissection with aneurysm: