Is an Endovascular Stent Graft Right for You?

If you are considering endovascular stent grafting for the treatment of an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA), you have been told by your doctor that you have an aneurysm in your aorta that needs repairing. This is because your doctor may feel that the aneurysm is getting bigger and there is a risk of it rupturing.

Normal aorta (left) and abdominal aortic aneurysm (right)

Detail - Normal aorta (left) and abdominal aortic aneurysm (right)

In the past, the only treatment available was a surgical repair. In this procedure, the section of the aorta where the aneurysm has formed is replaced with a synthetic graft.

Today, patients may benefit from an alternative and minimally invasive procedure called endovascular stent grafting. This is also referred to as endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR).

Endovascular stent grafting is called "minimally invasive," because, unlike open surgery, the stents used in endovascular stent grafting are designed to be placed inside the area of the abdominal aortic aneurysm without the need to remove any part of the aorta.

Are You a Candidate for Endovascular Stent Grafting?

You may be a good candidate if you are:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • Not pregnant
  • Healthy enough to undergo a 2- to 4-hour procedure
  • Able to attend regularly scheduled office visits with your consultant following the procedure, including radiographic imaging studies to evaluate the status of the stent graft and abdominal aortic aneurysm. This includes at least one visit annually for life.
  • Fully informed about the risks and benefits of the stent graft procedure as compared to open surgical repair

You may not be a good candidate if you have a very large abdominal aortic aneurysm, irregularly shaped aneurysms or blood vessels, or other conditions that your doctor may discuss with you.

Talk to Your Doctor

It is very important that you talk to your doctor about treatment alternatives for your abdominal aortic aneurysm. Your doctor can provide details about the endovascular stent grafting procedure and whether or not it is right for you.

Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.

Last updated: 22 Sep 2010

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