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Aortic Aneurysm Repair

By Jerry Walsh

15,000 people die each year from ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysms. Dr. Shelby Cooper, a vascular surgeon at Bassett Hospital in Cooperstown, says, “Aneurysms are the 10th leading cause of death in this country, so it’s not an inconsequential problem. Close to 5% of patients across the spectrum will develop an abdominal aortic aneurysm during their life.” Dr. Cooper says it’s a particularly serious health issue in an aging population. He explains that endograft repair of these aneurysms is often better for older patients. The surgery involves small incisions in the groin and x-ray guided placement of a stent graft.

Since there is no large abdominal incision, the hospital stay is shorter and the risk of major complications is lower.As of January 1, 2007, screening ultrasounds for abdominal aortic aneurysms are covered by Medicare for recipients considered high risk, which includes men who have a smoking history, and men and women who have a family history of aortic aneurysms.

For more information about the services available at Bassett Healthcare, visit www.bassett.org
For an appointment call 1-800-BASSETT.

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