In part 3 of our Cardiovascular Care Group aneurysm education series, we talk about the specifics of aneurysm repair – Endovascular Aneurysm Repair (EVAR). Our previous posts introduced you to the basics a.k.a. the "silent killer" and the different types of aneurysms and how best to manage them.
An endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR) is a minimally invasive technique for repairing aneurysms. It involves the use of covered stent grafts to “build a tunnel” within the dilated artery thereby blocking the aneurysm from blood pressure and decreasing the risk of rupture.
This procedure is usually performed percutaneously – passing through the skin via a needle – with two small, (<1cm) punctures in the groin. The stent graft is collapsed to the size a pencil before it is introduced. It is then passed to a point in the body where it is deployed and held in place by radial force (outward pressure) on the walls of the normal artery above and below the aneurysm.
The benefit of this procedure is that the stent grafts allow for shorter recovery time --often just a one night hospital stay.
There are more complex endovascular techniques that allow for the minimally invasive treatment of more complex aortic aneurysms. These may include grafts that have side branches or extra branches to allow the body to bring blood to other areas. Techniques such as “endoanchors” allow for the treatment of complex aneurysm pathology.
Ultimately, the decision to operate or observe an aneurysm should be made in consultation with a board-certified vascular surgeon, who is familiar with both simple and complex endovascular or open surgical techniques for aneurysm repair.
To learn more about these aneurysm repair options and consult with a board-certified vascular surgeon at The Cardiovascular Care Group, please contact us to schedule an appointment.