The Society for Vascular Surgery is partnering with the nonprofit AAAneurysm Outreach and other organizations to offer free vascular disease screenings June 8 at George Washington University in Washington D.C. Participants will be screened for deadly abdominal aortic aneurysms, which usually have no symptoms, and for peripheral artery disease (PAD), which can lead to amputations.
The event is a collaboration between George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates, AAAneurysm Outreach and W.L. Gore and Associates. These free screening events nearly always detect aneurysms in several people, some of whom need immediate attention to avoid a fatal rupture.
Abdominal aortic aneurysm is a ballooning of the aorta, the largest blood vessel in the body. AAAs can rupture and are nearly always fatal. Ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm ranks in the top 15 causes of death for men over age 65.
PAD is a chronic disease in which plaque builds up in the arteries to the legs. This can gradually block blood flow, which can lead to amputation.
“Many people have vascular disease and don’t know it, because there are no symptoms,” said Dr. Robyn Macsata. “These screening tests are simple ultrasound exams with no needles and no radiation. It only takes a few minutes and is painless.”
Other partners include the Society for Vascular Nursing, the American Heart Association and the Society for Vascular Ultrasound.
AAAneurysm Outreach, headquartered in New Orleans, La., is the nation’s only non-profit dedicated to mobilizing people and resources to eliminate the devastating consequences of AAA rupture through education and early detection. Visit www.aoutreach.org.