Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA)

The aorta is the large blood vessel that carries oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the body’s vital organs. An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a bulging or ballooning in a portion of the aorta that runs through the abdomen. This bulge can break open, causing life-threatening internal bleeding.

Surgeons in the Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery at Cooper University Health Care treat a high volume of patients with AAA. Research has shown that patients with AAA who receive care at high-volume centers have better outcomes than patients at low-volume facilities. Our specialists, who are solely dedicated to treating patients with vascular problems, ensure you receive compassionate and personalized care.

Why Choose Us for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Care?

Our internationally recognized vascular and endovascular surgeons have extensive experience diagnosing and treating AAA. They choose a treatment approach that is right for you, based on the size and location of the aneurysm and your overall health.

Some features of our program include:

  • Expert diagnosis: Our vascular and endovascular specialists use the latest imaging techniques to determine the size, shape, and exact location of your aneurysm. Tests may include:
    • Abdominal ultrasound, which uses sound waves to create pictures of the aorta and the aneurysm
    • Computed tomography (CT) scan, a combination of X-rays and computer technology that produces detailed pictures of the body, including the aorta
  • Personalized approach to care: After diagnosis, we determine the best treatment options for your unique situation. If the aneurysm is small and isn’t causing symptoms, you may only need careful monitoring by our specialists. However, surgery is often the best approach for managing an AAA.
  • A high-volume center: Our surgeons perform a large number of AAA repairs. This experience adds to their expertise and helps to ensure excellent outcomes. We offer the following procedures for treating AAA:

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Risk Factors

While we don’t completely understand the causes of AAA, several risk factors are associated with the condition. These include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Atherosclerosis, hardening of the arteries
  • Aortitis, inflammation of the aorta
  • Diabetes
  • Being age 65 or older
  • Smoking
  • Trauma to the abdominal aorta
  • Family history of AAA

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Symptoms

As an AAA develops, you may not have any symptoms. However, if the bulge grows rapidly and bursts, you may experience:

  • Severe and sudden pain or constant pain in the abdomen or back
  • Pain in the back or abdomen that spreads toward the legs
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Clammy skin
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Rapid pulse
  • Low blood pressure
  • Shock

Blood clots can also develop, break off, and travel to other parts of the body, causing pain and other complications. If a clot travels to the brain, it can cause a stroke. If it travels to the heart, it can cause a heart attack.

Contact Us

To learn more about services available in the Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery or to schedule an appointment, please call 856.342.2151.

Refer a Patient

If you are a doctor who wants to refer a patient to the Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, please call 856.968.7067.