Ultrasound scan could save lives of men aged over 65
15 August 2016
Southend University Hospital is hosting abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) screenings as part of a National Screening Programme for men in their 65th year.
The hospital is leading the screening initiative for the whole
of Essex and screens 8,000 men a year.
The process involves a quick ultrasound scan to detect any
weakening or bulging of the abdominal aorta which is called an
It's a service only open to men as they are six times more
likely to have an AAA than women.
This condition mainly affects men between the ages of 65-74, it
is symptom free and, although rare, large aneurysms can be fatal as
they can eventually burst and cause internal bleeding. Around
85 out of 100 people die when an aneurysm bursts.
Belinda Sheridan, AAA Screening Technician, explained: "The test
is quick, painless and could potentially save a person's life; it
is certainly worth the 10 minutes it takes to have your abdomen
"If we find an abdominal aortic aneurysm early we can either
monitor it or treat it to avoid the aneurysm causing serious
problems. Results are given immediately to the patients and a
letter confirming the result sent to the patients GP."
The Essex programme commenced screening three years ago so men
aged 68 and over may have missed out on the scan and.
Men over 65 years of age can phone the above number with their
GP address and NHS number, which can be found on any prescription,
and also self-refer.
Although AAA team is based at Southend University Hospital,
screenings takes place at various clinics, GP surgeries and
hospitals across Essex. Call 01702 385 559 to find your nearest