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A visceral arterial aneurysm (VAA) is a localized, abnormal dilatation or bulging of an artery that supplies blood to the major body organs (viscera). These aneurysms can occur in any of the major arteries that supply blood to the major organs, including the liver, spleen, pancreas, intestines, and kidneys. While they are relatively rare, visceral arterial aneurysms can be a serious medical condition and may lead to life-threatening complications if they rupture.
There are several types of visceral arterial aneurysms based on the location:
Visceral arterial aneurysms are often discovered incidentally during imaging studies performed for other medical reasons. However, some patients may experience symptoms if the aneurysm becomes large or starts to compress nearby structures.
Symptoms of a visceral arterial aneurysm may include:
The most concerning complication of visceral arterial aneurysms is rupture, which can lead to significant internal bleeding and a life-threatening condition known as hemorrhagic shock.
Treatment for visceral arterial aneurysms depends on several factors, including the size, location, and overall health of the patient. Options may include:
The choice of treatment will be made by a medical team experienced in managing vascular conditions and will depend on the specific characteristics of the aneurysm and the patient’s overall health.
Since visceral arterial aneurysms can be serious and potentially life-threatening, timely diagnosis and appropriate management are crucial. If you suspect you may have a visceral arterial aneurysm or experience severe abdominal pain or signs of shock, seek immediate medical attention.