Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening

Topic Overview

Abdominal aortic aneurysms can be found during an ultrasound screening test. Screening tests help your doctor look for a certain disease or condition before any symptoms appear.

Your doctor may recommend a screening test if you are a man who is:

  • Age 65 to 75 and has ever smoked.1
  • At least 60 years old and who has a first-degree relative (for example, father or brother) who has had an aneurysm.2

Some doctors think that other groups should be screened too. Some say all men 65 years and older should be screened, regardless of their risk. Some say men as young as 50 should be screened if they have a family history. Some say women age 65 and older should be screened if they have ever smoked or have a family history of AAA. Some say women should not be screened at all.

Talk to your doctor about whether the benefits of screening would outweigh the risks in your case. For more information, see:

Click here to view a Decision Point.Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm: Should I Get a Screening Test?

People who have Marfan's syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, or another condition that puts them at risk may benefit from screening.

References

Citations

  1. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (2005). Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm. Available online: http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/uspstf/uspsaneu.htm.
  2. Hirsch AT, et al. (2006). ACC/AHA 2005 practice guidelines for the management of patients with peripheral arterial disease (lower extremity, renal, mesenteric, and abdominal aortic): A collaborative report from the American Association for Vascular Surgery/Society for Vascular Surgery, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, Society for Vascular Medicine and Biology, Society of Interventional Radiology, and the ACC/AHA Task Force on Practice Guidelines (Writing Committee to Develop Guidelines for the Management of Patients With Peripheral Arterial Disease): Endorsed by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation; National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; Society for Vascular Nursing; TransAtlantic Inter-Society Consensus; and Vascular Disease Foundation. Circulation, 113(11): e463–e654.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer David A. Szalay, MD - Vascular Surgery
Current as of June 4, 2014

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