A peripheral aneurysm is an aneurysm that occurs in an artery other than the aortic artery. An aneurysm is a weakened area of an artery wall bulges or expands.
Why Choose The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center?
The vascular surgeons at Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center have extensive experience with traditional open repair of aneurysms, including repair of complex cases. They are also expert at minimally invasive repairs, and have experience in the use of all of the available stent graft technologies available to treat a wide variety of aneurysms. Ohio State's participation in national clinical trials helps direct the development of the next generation of stent grafts for the treatment of aneurysms.
What Is Peripheral Aneurysm?
Peripheral aneurysms develop in arteries other than the aorta (largest artery in your body). Peripheral aneurysms most commonly develop in the popliteal artery, which runs down the lower part of your thigh and knee. Though not as common, peripheral aneurysms can also develop in the:
- Femoral artery (located in the groin)
- Carotid artery (located in the neck)
- Arteries in the arms
- Arteries supplying blood to the kidneys or bowel (a visceral aneurysm)
Peripheral aneurysms are not as likely to rupture as aortic aneurysms. More often, blood clots develop that may block blood flow to your arms, legs or brain. If it is large enough, a peripheral aneurysm can press on a nerve or vein, causing pain, swelling or numbness.
What Causes Peripheral Aneurysm?
The specific cause of a peripheral aneurysm is not clear; injury, infection and aging can be factors. Researchers believe that atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) plays an important role. Atherosclerosis occurs when plaque builds up on the artery walls, narrowing them and slowing blood flow. Risk factors that contribute to atherosclerosis include:
If a peripheral aneurysm is found in one leg, you are at greater risk of having one in the other leg. Peripheral aneurysm also increases your risk of aortic aneurysm.