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Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms


An aneurysm is a "bulge" in the blood vessel caused by weakening of the blood vessel wall. The most common location for an aneurysm is the main blood vessel that comes out of the heart to supply the legs. Rupture of this vessel accounts for 15,000 deaths per year. Traditional treatment involves major abdominal surgery to "tie-off" the bad segment of vessel and do a bypass operation with polyester graft material. This surgical procedure has a high rate of morbidity.

Interventional radiologists at Adventist Imaging Network are among a few in Illinois who can treat aneurysms with a new device called a stent-graft or endovascular graft. This device is placed inside the vessel to seal-off the aneurysm from the inside out. This device is delivered to the abnormal vessel through a small tube to catheter that enters the leg artery.

This cutting-edge technology is still in its very early stages, but appears to have much less risk, less blood loss, shorter hospital stays, and much shorter recovery times. Aneurysms almost anywhere in the body can be treated using this new technology.

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