How do potentially deadly aneurysms grow?

The United Kingdom Aneurysm Growth Study

Matthew Bown (lead researcher)

Leicester, University of

Start date: 01 October 2014 (Duration 5 years)

An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a balloon-like swelling of the aorta, the body’s main blood vessel. If AAAs become large and burst, they can cause internal bleeding and sudden death. Surgery to repair AAA is risky, but doctors will operate if an aneurysm is large and likely to burst.

The NHS operates an AAA screening programme for men over 65, and those detected are usually small, low risk, and are monitored rather than repaired. Small aneurysms usually grow slowly and this period provides a window to potentially treat AAA and stop them growing. However little is known about their growth and, aside from surgery, there are currently no treatments.

Surgeon Matthew Bown and colleagues at the University of Leicester have received a BHF grant to work with the NHS AAA Screening Programme. They will study 5000 men in the UK with AAA for five years, looking at what causes AAAs to grow and what factors cause rapid growth. This information could help future research into new ways to prevent the growth of AAAs. They will also build a resource of information and biological samples for the national research community to use.

Project details

Grant amount £897,630
Grant type Clinical Study
Start Date 01 October 2014
Duration 5 years
Reference CS/14/2/30841
Status In progress

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