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International Angiology 2005 June;24(2):185-8

Copyright © 2005 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Is screening of abdominal aortic aneurysm effective in a general practice setting?

Fassiadis N., Roidl M., Stannett H., Andrews S. M., South L. M.

Maidstone Hospital, UK


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Aim. This prospective study was conducted to assess feasibility, patients’ acceptability and impact of ultrasound screening on rupture rate of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs).
Methods. A population based sample of men (n=2709), aged over 60 years, covering 11 general practices was offered ultrasound screening between January 1996 and December 2003. The presence of risk factors for arteriosclerosis and annual rupture rates for AAAs were analyzed.
Results. Of the 2709 patients approached, 2561 (95%) accepted and 161 (6%) did not attend. A total number of 81 (3.4%) patients (average age: 71 years) were identified with an AAA, of which 59 were small (<5 cm) and 22 large AAAs (>5 cm). The most common risk factors identified in patients with AAA were smoking/ex-smoking (n=68, 84%) and hypertension (n=32, 40%). The overall annual rupture rate was reduced from 47% in 1996 to 14% in 2003.
Conclusion. Ultrasound screening for AAA is feasible, acceptable by elderly male patients in a primary care setting and reduces the incidence of ruptured AAAs.

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