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Less invasive anesthetic methods better for endovascular aneurysm repair
Date:10/27/2011

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- Researchers have identified a safer, more cost effective way to provide anesthesia for patients undergoing endovascular repair of an abdominal aortic aneurysm a common, often asymptomatic condition that, if not found and treated, can be deadly.

A new study done by investigators at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center found that using less invasive spinal, epidural and local/monitored anesthesia care (MAC) is better than general anesthesia for elective endovascular repair of infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysms (EVAR).

Details of the research appear in the November issue of the Journal of Vascular Surgery, the official publication of the Society for Vascular Surgery.

Aortic aneurysms are abnormal bulges, or "ballooning" in the walls of the aorta, the body's largest artery. Roughly the diameter of a garden hose, this artery brings oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the rest of the body. It extends from the heart down through the chest and abdominal region, where it divides into a blood vessel that supplies each leg. Although an aneurysm can develop anywhere along the aorta, most occur in the section running through the abdomen (abdominal aneurysms). An infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysm is one that occurs in the belly, below the kidney arteries.

Occasionally an aneurysm may occur because of an area of weakness within the artery wall. An aortic aneurysm is serious because it may rupture, causing life-threatening internal bleeding. The risk of an aneurysm rupturing increases as the aneurysm gets larger. Each year, approximately 15,000 Americans die of a ruptured aortic aneurysm, however the condition is usually asymptomatic until the point of rupture. As such, most aortic aneurysms are unexpectedly identified while a patient is having a computed tomography (CT) scan or ultrasound done for another condition. Men over the age of 65 with a history of ever smoking can have an ultrasound done to spe
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Contact: Jessica Guenzel
jguenzel@wakehealth.edu
336-716-3487
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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