Atkin, Leanne and van Orsouw, Michael (2016) Abdominal aortic aneurysms. Independent Nurse, 2016 (8). pp. 23-25. ISSN 1747-9800

Abdominal Aortic Aneursym (AAA) is an enlargement of the aorta. The aorta is the main artery that runs from the heart suppling oxygented blood to all the major organs. AAA tended only to be found by coincIndence when patients underwent some form of imaging, although in many cases AAA went undiagnosed until rupture occurred. The survival rate following rupture of AAA is only around 20%, meaning that for 80% of patients a rupture would be fatal, (Mureebe et al., 2008). To try and eliminate death from rupturing of AAA the National Abdominal Aortic Anneursym Screening Programme (NAAASP) was introduced in England in 2008, with the national roll out of the programme completed in 2012. Similar programmes were introduced across Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland in 2013. Across the UK the NAAASP invites all men in their 65th year to attend screening for abdominal aortic aneursym. With the full implementation of NAAASP nurses working in primary care will come into contact with men invited for screening or patients undergoing regular surviellence of known AAA. This article aims to provide an update for practice based nurses reviewing knowledge and evidence base relating to the causes, management and treatment of patients with known AAA.

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