Abdominal aneurysm Perth

Silent but deadly: Understanding and managing abdominal aortic aneurysms

In our article featured in Medical Forum, I  discuss how abdominal aortic aneurysms, known as AAAs, pose a significant health threat as they typically remain undetected until they become extremely serious.

Often referred to as a ‘silent killer,’ these aneurysms are dangerous because they show few symptoms before they start causing serious problems.

It is vital to raise awareness and promote early detection to manage the risks effectively. Recent guidelines aim to guide both healthcare professionals and the public in recognising and handling these conditions promptly.

Dr Altaf Nishath | Vascular and endovascular surgeon Perth

Abdominal aneurysm Vascular surgeon Perth

The risks associated with AAAs

An AAA occurs when the wall of the aorta, the major blood vessel running through the abdomen, weakens and expands.

This expansion can lead to dangerous leaks or ruptures if not monitored.

Men over the age of 65, particularly those with a history of smoking, face the highest risk.

Additionally, hereditary factors play a crucial role; having a family history of AAA significantly increases one’s risk, making genetic predisposition a key concern in assessments and screenings.

Dr Nishath Altaf Medical Forum Perth

Preventive measures and treatments

Dealing with AAAs involves a combination of preventive measures and potential treatments.

For those at risk, especially individuals with a family history or known predispositions, regular screening through ultrasound is essential.

Management strategies include smoking cessation, controlling blood pressure, and using medications like statins and antiplatelets to slow aneurysm growth.

When an aneurysm reaches a critical size or growth rate, surgical options such as endovascular repair or open surgery are considered based on individual health profiles and risks.

Read the Medical Forum article here: You’ll find it on page 45.