Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) Specialist

University Vascular

Board Certified Vascular Surgeons located in Watkinsville, GA & Gainesville, GA

An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) rarely causes significant symptoms until it reaches a critical stage or ruptures. If you're at risk of developing an AAA or have any possible symptoms, the highly skilled vascular surgeons at University Vascular can help. At their locations in Watkinsville and Gainesville, Georgia, they can promptly screen, diagnose, and effectively treat your AAA. Call the office nearest you or book an appointment online today.

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) Q & A

What is an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA)?

An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a serious condition affecting the aorta, a large artery that runs from your heart, down your chest, and into your abdomen. An abdominal aortic aneurysm occurs in this final section of the aorta.

An aneurysm is swelling that develops where there's a weak patch in the wall of an artery. The risk of having an aneurysm is that it might swell and eventually burst. 

A ruptured AAA is a potentially life-threatening condition that can result in rapid death.

What symptoms can an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) cause?

Very often, a developing abdominal aortic aneurysm doesn't cause any trouble so you won't realize there's a problem.

If the AAA does start causing symptoms, you might experience back and abdominal pain. Another telling sign is being able to feel a pulse in the area of your belly button.

Some people have a greater risk of getting an abdominal aortic aneurysm, including those with high blood pressure or conditions like atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).

If you’re in a high-risk group, aged 65-75, and are or were previously a smoker, it's a good idea to attend routine abdominal aortic aneurysm screenings.

How is an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) diagnosed?

To help determine whether you have an abdominal aortic aneurysm, University Vascular may perform any of the following diagnostic exams:

  • Echocardiogram
  • CT scan
  • MRI 
  • Abdominal aortic ultrasound
  • Angiography

Very often, an AAA that doesn’t cause symptoms shows up during a routine health check or a doctor's exam for unrelated symptoms.

What treatments are there for an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA)?

Treatment for AAA varies according to how big the aneurysm is and how quickly it's growing.

A slow-growing, small aneurysm might only require regular monitoring. If your aneurysm is more extensive and growing rapidly, your provider might suggest surgically positioning a synthetic graft over the AAA to prevent it from rupturing.

Identifying the AAA and resolving the cause is vital to avoid the devastating consequences of a rupture. Call University Vascular to arrange your screening test or book an appointment online today.