Monday, June 05, 2006

Mealside Consult

Getting some lunch at the bagel place today, I stood in line behind one of the vascular surgeons who lectured us during my surgery rotation. His lecture topic, specifically, was on abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA), which is when the aorta balloons out because of extra thin walls ... and, if you're very unlucky, ruptures. It's not very common, and it most often occurs in patients over 50 years old.

One of the symptoms of an AAA -- before it ruptures, of course -- is that if you press down on your abdomen you can feel the pulsating blood. And I've felt my abdomen pulsate in the past, mostly at the gym when I'm working out.

So back in line, I thought this was my chance to confront an AAA specialist and see what he thought. I politely introduced myself, let him know how his lecture has been weighing on my mind, and then asked about my problem (or is it my "problem"? See here.) Immediately he shot it down with a quick "of course you feel a pulsation, you should, since you're skinny".


He then let me know of some things to look for in the event it truly was an AAA, so you can be sure I'll be examing my abdomen in more detail tonight.

So much for that.

(However, I'll admit I was slightly relieved to hear what he said.)

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