What is it?
An aortic aneurysm is a bulging, dilation or ballooning in the wall of a aorta, that is due to weakness or degeneration that develops in a portion of the artery wall. Just like a balloon, the aneurysm enlarges, stretching the walls of the artery thinner which compromises the artery wall's ability to stretch any further. At this point, an aneurysm is at risk of rupturing and causing potentially fatal bleeding, just as a balloon will pop when blown up too much.
Endovascular grafting is a minimally invasive method to treat an aortic aneurysm. Instead of an open aneurysm repair in which the chest or abdomen are surgically opened, the doctor may consider a procedure called an endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR).
In the EVAR procedure, a stent graft (a fabric tube supported by metal wire stents that reinforces the weak spot in the aorta) is inserted into the aneurysm through small incisions in the groin.
Endovascular repair reduces recovery time to a few days and greatly reduces time in the hospital.
However, not all aneurysms are suitable for endovascular repair. The location or size of the aneurysm may prevent a stent graft from being safely or reliably placed inside the aneurysm.