Aortic aneurysm is more prevalent in elderly men (male:female ratio is 4:1), and the incidence has been estimated at 11% in men over 65 .
It is related to, and therefore may co-exist with, other atheromatous diseases, such as myocardial infarction, stroke and mesenteric ischaemia.
It has been estimated that, of those who suffer a ruptured aortic aneurysm in the community, only about 50% will reach hospital alive. Furthermore, the 30-day mortality rate of those with a ruptured aneurysm who reach surgery, is also approximately 50%.
As a result, short-term survival after a ruptured AAA is 1 in 4, whereas mortality following elective surgery is less than 5%. Detecting a quiescent aortic aneurysm in the emergency department (ED) may therefore be lifesaving.
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