Together we Speak Louder

Have you had your AAA screening?

Posted on: 05/11/2018

Around 5,000 people, most of them older men, die in England and Wales every year from abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs), which are formed when the main blood vessel in the body weakens and expands.

An AAA usually causes no symptoms but, if it bursts, is extremely dangerous and usually fatal. Around 8 out of 10 people with a ruptured AAA either die before they reach hospital or don’t survive surgery.

The Sussex Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) Screening Programme, provided by Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust (SCFT), is encouraging men aged 65 and over to seriously consider the offer of AAA screening.

The programme invites men for screening during the year they turn 65 while men aged over 65 who have not previously been screened can arrange an appointment by contacting the service directly. Screening aims to reduce preventable deaths by detecting aneurysms early when they can be treated effectively. The screening test involves a simple ultrasound scan which takes about 10-15 minutes.

Bob Marson, from West Sussex, underwent surgery to repair an aneurysm detected by screening in December 2014 and is a strong supporter of the programme. He said: “Without the availability of the NHS screening programme, the likelihood of me still being alive to tell the tale would be very unlikely. The advice I would give any man would be not to ignore the offer of an AAA screen.”

For more information about AAA, and how to be screened – please go to