Abdominal aortic aneurysm: endovascular surgery 

Endovascular surgery is a type of keyhole operation. Find out how this procedure is performed.

More about treating AAA

Transcript of Abdominal aortic aneurysm: endovascular surgery

NHS SCREENING PROGRAMMES ABDOMINAL AORTIC ANEURYSM

Endovascular aneurysm repair or stenting is a type of keyhole surgery.

JONATHAN EARNSHAW, CONSULTANT VASCULAR SURGEON

AND DIRECTOR OF NHS AAA SCREENING PROGRAMME

Only about 60 out of every 100 large aneurysms

is suitable for this type of repair.

Aneurysms that occur close to or above the arteries to the kidneys

are particularly difficult to treat using this technique.

Stenting involves inserting

an artificial piece of fabric called a graft inside your aneurysm,

just like lining the inside of a chimney.

Blood then passes through the stent graft instead of the aneurysm,

thus preventing further growth and rupture.

The procedure is done through small cuts in each groin at the top of your legs,

and may be under general or local anaesthetic.

X-rays are used to guide the graft into place

and it is secured using a metal stent.

The main advantage of endovascular repair

is that you will not need major abdominal surgery.

There is also less risk of you not surviving the surgery.

Approximately 98 to 99 out of every 100 patients

makes a full recovery after this type of operation.

You'll also need to spend less time in hospital

and your recovery will be quicker.

Full recovery usually takes two to four weeks after endovascular repair,

compared to around three months after open surgery.

The main disadvantage of endovascular repair

is that the attachment of the graft to your aorta

is not as secure as with open surgery.

This means you may need regular follow-up,

with scans to make sure the graft has not slipped.

There is also more chance that you will have to return to hospital in the future

if the stent moves or twists or kinks.

Every year, about 10 in 100 patients who have had an endovascular repair

are likely to need another procedure on their graft.

Though most do not need open surgery and are treated with a further stent.

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