Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms: What Are Risk Factors For Expansion

Rachel Bhak MS Department of Veterans Affairs Cooperative Studies Program Coordinating Center West Haven, ConnecticutMedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Rachel Bhak MS
Department of Veterans Affairs Cooperative Studies Program Coordinating Center
West Haven, Connecticut

Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Ms. Bhak: Abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA) and their rupture are potentially fatal, so monitoring and understanding their expansion is of utmost importance. This study sought to characterize factors associated with Abdominal aortic aneurysms expansion, as well as their different growth patterns. The main findings are that current smoking and diastolic blood pressure are associated with increased linear expansion rate, diabetes with a decreased linear expansion rate, and diastolic blood pressure and baseline abdominal aortic aneurysms diameter with an accelerated expansion rate.

Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Ms. Bhak: : Clinicians and patients should understand that risk factors have been found to be associated with increased Abdominal aortic aneurysms expansion, which include smoking, elevated diastolic blood pressure, and baseline Abdominal aortic aneurysms diameter, so careful surveillance of these are important in reducing risk of rupture. They should also be aware that there are different growth patterns, and these risk factors can help determine what sort of growth trajectory the AAA diameter may follow.

Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Ms. Bhak:  The findings of clinical risk factors associated with AAA expansion seem to be mostly consistent across studies, so the next step in better understanding this expansion would be to focus on the shape of growth, i.e. linear, accelerating, or other patterns. Our shape factor analysis was limited in sample size, so a larger sample with more observations per patient could provide more precision and clarity to this matter.


Factors Associated With Small Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Expansion Rate

Rachel H. Bhak, MS; Michael Wininger, PhD; Gary R. Johnson, MS; Frank A. Lederle, MD; Louis M. Messina, MD; David J. Ballard, MD, MSPH, PhD; Samuel E. Wilson, MD; for the Aneurysm Detection and Management (ADAM) Study Group

JAMA Surg. Published online November 12, 2014. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2014.2025


Last Updated on November 15, 2014 by Marie Benz MD FAAD