Harvard Men's Health Watch

Screening savvy: You're likely at low risk for abdominal aortic aneurysm

A bulging abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) can be deadly, but only certain men should be checked for it with ultrasound. Men age 65 to 75 who have ever smoked are at high enough risk to make the test worth having. About 5% of men at high risk could develop an AAA. For men who never smoked and do not have a family history, the chance of having an AAA is about one in 100. Men like this who are tested are probably wasting their time. When an AAA becomes big enough, surgical repair may be advised.
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