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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What are the symptoms of an abdominal aneurysm ?

What are the symptoms of an abdominal aneurysm ?
Wed, 16 Dec 2009
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I hope you're just curious about this and not actually having a problem right now. I see these all the time at the hospital and it's a serious deal. Back pain is the biggest sign. Sometimes it's coupled with chest pain too. An elevated blood pressure starts things off (that is what aggrevates the weakness in the aorta) and in every case requires some IV medication to get it down quickly and avoid rupturing the vessel. You can have decreased pulses in the feet but that can indicate also that things have progressed too far. If a AAA (abdominal aortic aneurysm or Triple A) is supected they will take the patient to have a CT scan to 'look' at it. Once they determine the size they will determine the appropriate treatment. Surgery is indicated for anything that is 5cm or larger OR in an instance where the patient is unstable and needs a repair right away as in the case of an active leak in the vessel. The back pain is usually severe and different than any back pain the patient may have ever had in the past. Very deep and can cause numbness in the legs or feet. In any event...if it's you and you're having trouble now...GET TO THE ER RIGHT AWAY! This is a life threatening but treatable problem. I hope this helps. Jeff the nurse in Nashville
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