If you have a large abdominal aortic aneurysm chances are you unknowingly are playing Russian roulette with your life because it could burst at any moment. Often times there are no symptoms until it's too late, that's why screening and early intervention are so important. Nancy Naeve Brown watched as vascular specialists at the Avera Heart Hospital performed an angiogram.
North Central Heart Vascular Specialist Dr. Michael Bacharach and his team at the Avera Heart Hospital are doing an angiogram on this 65 year old patient with an abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Dr. Bacharach says, "An aneurysm represents an out patch or weakening of the abdominal aorta then bulges out much like an old balloon tire that would develop a weakness in the sidewall. When they get large enough they could potentially break. When they do break it's a catastrophic event often times taking an individual's life."
That why it's critical to repair the aneurysm before it ruptures. Since most aneurysms don't present with any symptoms it's also critical to get vascular screening done to find it in the first place. In this procedure Dr. Bacharach is getting an exact measurement of the aneurysm by first identifying it by using a special dye in the veins and then by using IVUS which is intra vascular ultra sound. The combination gives an external and internal look at the bulging artery.
Dr. Bacharach says, "We are trying to determine if this is one that can be treated from the inside out by using an endograft versus opening him up."
Dr. Bacharach is utilizing the Avera Heart Hospital's new vascular lab equipped with the only Artis zeego robotic technology system in the region.
Dr. Bacharach says, "The imaging and the different angles we can obtain do allow us to get spectacular images and do it with less radiation, less contrast. Really though, the big advantage is this particular case is that it's a hybrid room that allows us to do a repair in a combined surgical endovascular."
The lab was designed as a full surgical suite too which means in the event Dr. Bacharach found that the aneurysm was about to rupture or had during this procedure, in a matter of seconds the cath lab would become an operating room. This is so important because in cases like that every second matters.
Planet Heart & Vascular Screening for $75
A $25 savings. Available at the Avera Heart Hospital in Sioux Falls.
Includes: Calcium score CT, blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar check, body mass index and carotid artery, abdominal aortic aneurysm and peripheral artery disease screening.
Call 1-877-AT-AVERA to schedule an appointment or to learn more.