Medical Definition of Abdominal aneurysm

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Reviewed on 12/27/2018

Abdominal aneurysm: An aneurysm situated within the abdomen (belly). An aneurysm is a localized widening (dilatation) of an artery, vein, or the heart. At the area of an aneurysm, there is typically a bulge and the wall is weakened and may rupture. The word "aneurysm" comes from the Greek "aneurysma" meaning "a widening." An aneurysm may involve the aorta, the largest artery in the body, as it courses down through the abdomen. Because of the great volume of blood flowing under high pressure in the aorta, rupture of an abdominal aortic aneurysm is a surefire catastrophe.

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Reviewed on 12/27/2018