Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening

Men across Scotland in their 65th year will be invited to be screened for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA). Up to 170 lives a year in Scotland could be saved through this screening programme.

The screening programme aims to reduce the mortality associated with the risk of aortic abdominal aneurysm rupture in men aged 65 years and older. The screening involves a ultrascan of the abdomen and will take place at local screening centres across the country.

The screening programme identifies men who have an aortic diameter of greater than 3cm by way of ultrasound examination of the aorta. If the measurement is under 3cm, the man is unlikely to develop an aneurysm and will be discharged from the screening programme. If the measurement is over 3cm then they will be referred onto their GP or a health specialist who will prescribe the next step.

Patient resources- abdominal aortic aneurysm

All men receive an invitation letter to attend screening which is accompanied by the leaflet,

'Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening information' (PDF)

This leaflet contains general information about the condition of AAA, why it’s important to be screened, what will happen at the appointment, what your results mean and further information signposts.

If there is a positive result men will be given one of the following leaflets depending on the size of their aneurysm:

'You have a (small) abdominal aortic aneurysm what you need to know' (PDF)

This explains more about what a small aneurysm (3- 4.4cm) is and what the next step will be for a small aneurysm. It also covers preventative lifestyle factors.

'You have a (medium) abdominal aortic aneurysm what you need to know' (PDF)

This leaflet explains more about what a medium aneurysm (4.5- 5.4 cm) is and what the next step will be for a medium aneurysm. It also covers preventative lifestyle factors.

'You have a (large) abdominal aortic aneurysm what you need to know' (PDF)

The referral leaflet explains more about what a large aneurysm (over 5.5cm) is and what the next step will be for men with a large aneurysm.

These leaflets are also available in various languages and in an easy read format.

Professional resources

AAA professional briefing sheets are available containing the information to support health professionals when discussing and answering questions regarding the Scottish AAA Screening Programme.

Updated 29 July 2014

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