This free screening can save lives, as it may have done for this Doncaster man who popped in to Tesco....

A brief visit to a pop-in screening clinic could have saved one Doncaster shopper’s life.

By Sally Burton
Thursday, 01 August, 2019, 13:38
The AAA scan is quick and painless

A clinic set up in a local Tesco store in July invited men aged 65 or older to walk in and have a free, painless and quick scan for an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

Thirty men took advantage of the offer and one of them was found to have a small aneurysm.

He will now be screened at regular intervals by the programme to monitor its size.

The Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening Programme for South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw holds clinics regularly to check local men for the life-threatening condition.

This screening is offered to men when they turn 65, as the condition is most common in men of this age and above.

In some people, as they get older, the wall of the aorta in the abdomen can become weak. It can then start to expand and form an AAA.

It is estimated that around one in 25 men aged between 65 and 74 in England have an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

The screening programme for South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw is delivered in over 30 local places, with access to a Health Bus within communities.

If a large aneurysm is detected, men are referred to a vascular surgeon who will discuss treatment options.

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Large aneurysms are rare but can be very serious. As the wall of the aorta stretches it can rupture and if this happens, can be life threatening. Most aneurysms can be successfully treated with surgery.

Screening involves a pain-free ultrasound scan of the abdomen. Men are told their result straight away and their GP is also informed.

There are usually no symptoms for AAA’s and the only way to detect whether a person has an abdominal aortic aneurysm is by having this simple scan.

Babatunde Fakolade, South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw AAA screening programme manager, said: “This simple ultrasound scan of the abdomen only takes a few minutes and can save lives.

“If no aneurysm is found they are discharged and do not need to be screened again.”

Men over 65 who have not yet been screened, and do not have a known AAA, can self-refer to the programme by contacting the team on 01709 649100.

As there are no signs and symptoms of the condition, it’s crucial that men take advantage of this free service.”

If you are a member of a group of older men and would like the team to come along and talk about the importance of screening please get in touch with the Communications and Engagement Screening Team on 01909 572726.