ABDOMINAL AORTIC ANEURYSMS AND CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE
Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a focal dilatation of at least 1,5 times the normal aortic diameter at the level of the renal arteries or, in absolute value, it is a diameter superior to 30 mm. The global prevalence is 2% in men older than 65 years, which is 4 times higher than the prevalence of AAA in women.
The major risk factors for AAA are smoking, age, ethnicity, male gender and familiar history. There is a known association between coronary artery disease and AAA, probably because they share similar risk factors.
The authors aim to perform a review about the association between these diseases and about the advantages of doing a screening in this subgroup of patients.
Besides AAAs are not a result or manifestation of atherosclerosis, neither a dose-response effect, the atherosclerosis seems to be an important risk factor to the development of AAA, hence the association between AAA and coronary artery disease. The AAA prevalence is significantly higher in patients with known coronary disease; it varies between 1,8 and 9,5% in the coronary disease subgroup comparing to 2% in general population. The severity of coronary disease also seems related to AAA prevalence.
However, there are no sufficient data to support AAA screening in this subgroup of patients, mainly because the decrease of morbidity and mortality with screening is not yet determined.
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