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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2012 August;67(4):355-60

language: English

Ruptured aneurysm of the popliteal artery. Is the diagnosis still difficult?

Agrafiotis A. C., Horn D., Segers B., Lemaitre J., Bosschaerts T.

Department of Vascular and Thoracic Surgery, St Pierre University Hospital, Brussels, Belgium


The aneurysm of the popliteal artery is the most commonly treated non-aortoiliac aneurysm, accounting for more than 70% of all peripheral aneurysms. The rupture of a popliteal aneurysm is rare and it is often misdiagnosed. In the case of a 46-year old female patient here reported, the patient was referred to our department with the diagnosis of ruptured aneurysm of the right popliteal artery with formation of a large pseudo-aneurysm. We operated the patient on a semi-urgent basis and performed a replacement of the popliteal artery by a saphenous vein graft. Three months after the operation, the patient was free of symptoms. This article’s aim was to emphasize on how the pitfalls during clinical examination, as well as the problems of imaging interpretation, can make the diagnosis of ruptured popliteal aneurysm still difficult.

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