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Iliac Aneurysm

An iliac aneurysm is bulging and weakness in the wall of the iliac artery, a group of arteries located in the pelvis. An iliac aneurysm can burst, which can cause life-threatening uncontrolled bleeding.

condition

Definition

An iliac aneurysm is bulging and weakness in the wall of the iliac artery, a group of arteries located in the pelvis. An iliac aneurysm can burst, which can cause life-threatening uncontrolled bleeding.

Iliac Aneurysm - Normal

Causes

  • Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries)
  • Infections
  • Trauma from hip or lower-back surgery

Risk

  • Iliac AneurysmBeing older than 60
  • Being a man
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking
  • Genetic disorders

Symptoms

If you have an iliac aneurysm, you may have no symptoms. Symptoms include:

  • Back pain
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Groin pain
diagnosis

Diagnosis

  • Computed Tomography (CT) scan: X-ray views of the aortic artery are taken to determine if there are any aneurysms.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan: Radio waves and magnetic fields are used to show areas where an aneurysm may be present.
  • Angiography: A dye is inserted into the arteries through a catheter, then an X-ray is taken to show how blood flows through the arteries and whether any aneurysms are present. UVA's angiography/interventional radiology suites are equipped with technology that allows for 3-D images of aneurysms to help determine the best plan of treatment.
treatment

Treatment

  • Close monitoring: A patient may undergo regular screenings to check the size and growth of the iliac aneurysm to determine if treatment is necessary.
  • Lifestyle changes: Steps such as quitting smoking, controlling diabetes and eating a low-fat diet to reduce cholesterol may help keep the aneurysm from growing.
  • Medication: A patient may receive medicine to reduce cholesterol or blood-pressure levels. Carefully controlling high blood pressure is an important part of the treatment.
  • Surgery: Surgeons may use a graft (a cylinder-like tube) to repair the aneurysm. In some cases, open surgery (requiring a larger incision in the chest) may be necessary to repair the aneurysm. UVA also uses minimally invasive endovascular techniques (only requiring a small incision in the groin) to repair iliac aneurysms.
Vascular Screenings

Are You Eligible? 

Just because you don't have symptoms of vascular disease doesn't mean you aren't at risk. We offer screenings every week at Northridge Medical Park.

Eligible patients include:

  • Age 65 or older
  • Age 50 or older with cardiovascular risk factors
  • Adults 45 years or older and an abnormal finding would prompt modification of your lifestyle or medical care
  • Family history of abdominal aortic aneurysm 

Insurance doesn't cover screenings if you aren't experiencing symptoms. The out-of-pocket cost is $99 for all tests.

Find out more (PDF) or call 434.924.5824.

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