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Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA)

An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) occurs when the wall of the abdominal aorta weakens and bulges. If left untreated, the Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm poses a risk of rupture, leading to severe complications like internal bleeding. Early detection through screening is crucial to prevent potential life-threatening events.

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

What you should know about Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

What Is An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA)?

An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) is an abnormal dilation or bulging in the wall of the abdominal aorta, the major blood vessel that supplies blood to the lower part of the body. The abdominal aorta is the largest artery in the abdomen, originating from the heart and extending down through the chest and abdomen. When the wall of this artery weakens, it can lead to the formation of an aneurysm, which, if left untreated, may pose a risk of rupture with potentially severe and life-threatening consequences.

What Are The Symptoms Of An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm?

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms (AAAs) often develop without noticeable symptoms. As they enlarge, individuals may experience persistent abdominal or back pain, a pulsating sensation in the abdomen, or tenderness upon touch. 


Sudden, severe abdominal or back pain, increased heart rate, pale/clammy skin, dizziness and shortness of breath could indicate a ruptured AAA, requiring immediate medical attention.

What Are The Causes Of An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm And Who Is At Risk?

The primary cause of an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) is the weakening of the wall of the abdominal aorta, which can be attributed to several factors. The most common risk factors include:


  • Age

  • Tobacco Use 

  • Family History

  • High Blood Pressure

  • Obesity 

  • High Cholesterol

How Can I Reduce The Risk Of Developing An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm?

Reducing the risk of developing an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) involves adopting a heart-healthy lifestyle and addressing modifiable risk factors. Key measures include:


  • Quit Smoking 

  • Manage Blood Pressure 

  • Maintain a Healthy Diet

  • Exercise Regularly

  • Reduce Alcohol Intake

How Is An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Diagnosed?
​​Diagnosing an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) involves a physical examination. However, imaging studies are crucial due to the often asymptomatic nature of AAAs. Ultrasound of the aorta is a non-invasive method to visualise and identify abnormal bulging. A CT scan provides comprehensive images for more detailed information, aiding healthcare professionals in assessing size, location, and characteristics for timely intervention. Regular screenings facilitate early detection and appropriate management, especially for at-risk individuals.

How Is An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Treated?

The treatment of an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) depends on factors such as the size, growth rate, and overall health of the individual. 


Monitoring: Regular monitoring through imaging studies, such as ultrasound or CT scans, is often employed for smaller AAAs to track any changes over time. 

Surgery: Surgical intervention may be recommended for larger or rapidly growing aneurysms to prevent the risk of rupture. Surgical options include open repair or endovascular repair, where a stent graft is inserted to strengthen the weakened aortic wall.

Dr Desmond Ooi: Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Treatment in Singapore

Dr. Desmond Ooi employs a personalised approach, considering factors such as aneurysm size, growth rate, and the patient's overall health. His comprehensive strategy may involve regular monitoring using imaging studies for smaller AAAs, while larger or rapidly growing aneurysms may require surgical intervention. If you have concerns about AAAs, schedule an appointment with Dr. Desmond Ooi for thorough and individualised management.

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