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An aneurysm is a weakened area of an artery wall that bulges or expands. Blood vessel walls can be weakened due to illness, injury or heredity. The risk of an aneurysm rupturing increases as it grows in size. A ruptured aneurysm causes internal bleeding that can lead to other serious life-threatening complications.
There are different types of aneurysms, including:
Caring for an aortic aneurysm is one of many offerings for vascular care at Ohio State.
While the exact cause is unclear, an aneurysm may be caused by multiple factors that damage the wall of a blood vessel. The weakening of a blood vessel wall can be caused by:
Steps you can take to lower your risk of developing an aneurysm include:
Aneurysms that occur within the body or brain usually do not cause symptoms before they rupture. However, aneurysms that occur near the skin's surface can often cause a visible mass that is painful and throbbing. A ruptured aneurysm is very dangerous and requires immediate emergency medical care.
Symptoms of a ruptured aneurysm include:
Aneurysms are often not accompanied by symptoms. Because of this they are usually detected during an examination for another condition.
Tests to confirm the presence of an aneurysm include:
Treatment of an aneurysm depends on its size and the symptoms an individual may be experiencing. The goal is to prevent the aneurysm from ever rupturing. Medication to control high blood pressure and to lower cholesterol may be prescribed. Surgery may also be indicated.
There are generally two types of aneurysm repair surgeries:
A ruptured aneurysm is a very dangerous condition. Although it is possible to repair a ruptured aneurysm surgically, it is important to identify and treat aneurysms before a rupture occurs.
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