Screening for thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms in patients with aortoiliac atherosclerosis: A preliminary study
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Thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms (TAAs) usually present with rupture and carry a high morbidity and mortality rate. Early detection of TAAs with screening methods and elective surgical repair could potentially diminish these complications. The present study was aimed at screening for TAA in patients with angiography-proven aortoiliac atherosclerosis (n = 43). A group of patients without aortoiliac atherosclerosis was used as controls (n = 15). Age, sex and aortic diameter at the level of the T12 vertebra were recorded. The subjects were divided into two age categories, the first made up of those aged less than 65 years and the second those aged 65 years or more. A T12 aortic diameter greater than 35 mm was used to indicate TAA. Statistical analyses were performed by independent t-test and general linear model with age category, sex and atherosclerosis as factors. The mean T12 aortic diameters were greater in patients with atherosclerosis than in the control group (25.2 ط¢آ± 5.0 vs. 22.9 ط¢آ± 2.4 mm; p = 0.034). Two out of 43 patients (4.7%) with aortoiliac atherosclerosis had TAA, while no one in the control group had TAA. A general linear model showed that the interaction of age category and sex significantly affected the T12 aortic diameter [F (1.49) = 4.044, p = 0.050]. Post hoc (LSD) tests revealed that male patients aged over 65 had greater T12 aortic diameters than other patients. We conclude that patients with aortoiliac atherosclerosis may be at greater risk for developing TAA. Ageing and male sex may also be associated with thoracoabdominal aortic enlargement. Copyright ط¢آ© 2008 Via Medica.
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