Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Surgery

Open abdominal surgery is the standard treatment for abdominal aortic aneurysm. The procedure is done using general anesthesia and takes approximately 2-4 hours. An incision is made in the abdomen or in the side of the body to access the aorta at the point of the aneurysm. The affected section will be removed and a vascular graft will be used to connect the ends. The graft is made from synthetic material and used in place of the blood vessel. This graft is permanent and lasts a very long time.

Possible Risks and Complications
The severity of complications will depend on your health before the procedure. Possible complications include:
  • Excessive bleeding (2-5%)
  • Leg ischemia (1-4%)
  • Colon ischemia (1-2%)
  • Deep vein thrombosis (5-8%)
  • Wound infection (less than 2-6%)
  • Renal insufficiency (5-12%)
  • Pneumonia (5%)
  • Myocardial infarction (2-8%)
  • Permanent stroke (1-2%)
  • Obstruction of the vascular graft (less than 1%)
  • Infection of the vascular graft (less than 1%)
Medication may be an option in small aneurysms if you have no symptoms, but you will need to see your doctor regularly to monitor the size of the aneurysm to see if it grows at all. Other treatment options include endovascular aortic aneurysm repair (EVAR) or thoracic endovascular aortic aneurysm repair (TEVAR). Treatment options depend on many factors. Please talk to your doctor if you have any questions.

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