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What is thoraco-abdominal aneurysm repair?

Aneurysms that affect the portion of the aorta above the kidneys into the chest are called thoraco-abdominal aortic aneurysms. To repair an aneurysm in this portion of the aorta, vascular or cardiovascular surgeons make an incision in the chest and sometimes the abdomen, clamp the aorta to temporarily stop blood flow, then open the aneurysm and sew in a graft to replace the affected vessel walls. Blood vessels to the left arm, spinal cord, bowels and kidney can be connected to the graft as necessary. This is major surgery but is the only option and can be life-saving. Blood flow is contained inside the graft alleviating pressure on the weakened walls of the aneurysm and allowing normal blood flow to the legs and other organs.

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