What are potential complications of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs)?

Updated: Jan 08, 2019
  • Author: Saum A Rahimi, MD, FACS; Chief Editor: Vincent Lopez Rowe, MD  more...
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The following are potential complications of AAAs:

  • Death (1.8-5% mortality for elective open repair, <1% for endovascular repair, and 50% if the AAA has ruptured, though studies are showing that this last figure is decreased with endovascular repair)
  • Pneumonia (5%)
  • Groin infection (<5%)
  • Graft infection (<1%)
  • Colon ischemia (<1% for elective repair, 15-20% if the AAA has ruptured)
  • Renal failure related to preoperative creatinine level, intraoperative cholesterol embolization, and hypotension
  • Incisional hernia (10-20%)
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Amputation from major arterial occlusion
  • Blue toe syndrome and cholesterol embolization to feet
  • Impotence in males - Erectile dysfunction and retrograde ejaculation (>30%)
  • Paresthesias in thighs from femoral exposure (rare)
  • Lymphocele in groin (~2%)
  • Late graft enteric fistula

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