An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) happens when a weakness develops in the wall of your artery or plaque buildup causes the abdominal aorta, your body’s largest artery, to bulge like a balloon. If the aorta ruptures from weakness or damage it is life threatening because it’s your body’s main supplier of blood.
more likely to develop one, if someone in your immediate family has had a AAA.
Some people with an abdominal aortic aneurysm may experience deep, constant pain in the belly. Other symptoms include pain in the chest, lower back or area over the kidneys; a pulsating feeling in the belly or above the belly button; and cold feet with or without a black and blue toe. However, most people with this type of aneurysm won’t experience symptoms at all.
That’s why knowing your risk is so important. Anyone with a family history of an aneurysm has a higher risk for abdominal aortic aneurysms and should talk with a specialist about having a vascular screening. People over the age of 60 (especially men), who smoke or have high blood pressure are also at a higher risk.