Member of:

The American College of Phlebology

Society of Interventional Radiology

Canadian Society for Vascular Surgery

Legs for Life, National Screening for Vascular Disease.

Toronto Endovascular Centre

This website has been created by physicians for the education of the public, patients and their families

Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening & Treatment Options





Treatment Options

Common Questions & Answers






Who should be screened?

According to the SIR Legs for Life Program, the following patient groups should be screened:

  • Male, over the age of 60 and have a history of smoking or a family history of AAA
  • Female, over the age of 60 and have a history of smoking and a family history of AAA

What are the risk factors most commonly associated with AAAs?

  • Men over 60- Four times as many men as women get AAAs. But 20% of AAAs do occur in women
  • Smokers-Current smokers are seven times more likely to develop AAAs than non-smokers. Former smokers are three times more likely.
  • Family history- 20% of AAA sufferers have a relative with the condition. If a relative died of an AAA rupture, your risk is increased

Other risk factors include:

  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Cardiovascular disease

Why should I be Screened for possible Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm?

In the majority of patients with AAA there are no symptoms and the AAA goes undetected.

Once detected, however AAAs can be monitored and treated effectively.

The risks of treating a AAA outweigh the risks of sudden death in the above high risk groups particularly with new endovascular treatment options.

The screening for AAA is non-invasive and painless

How can I get screened?

Call the Toronto Endovascular Centre at 416-925-2676

Arrange to bring a requisition form for ultrasound from your family physician at the time of your appointment at The Toronto Endovascular Centre


Print out the following requisition; have your Family Doctor fill it in and bring it for your screening/ultrasound appointment at the Toronto Endovascular Centre

To print requisition form, click here

Where Can I get Screened?

Currently Toronto Endovascular Centre is the only Legs for Life Site In Canada performing Abdominal Aortic Screening at 131 Hazelton Avenue, Ste 102 , Toronto .

[view map]

Is there any Cost for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening?

There is no cost for screening in the appropriate patient groups of:

  • Male, over the age of 60 and have a history of smoking or a family history of AAA
  • Female, over the age of 60 and have a history of smoking and a family history of AAA

The above patient groups must bring in a ultrasound requisition filled in by their Family Doctor.

What does screening involve?

  • Complete a questionnaire to determine your risk factors
  • A limited abdominal and pelvic ultrasound which takes 10 minutes and is a non-invasive test with virtually no complications
  • A preliminary report will be issued to you at the time of screening, and a report will be sent to your family doctor with the recommendations according to the literature.

What are the References for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening?

Adams D, Tulloh B, Galloway S, et al. Familial abdominal aortic aneurysm: prevalence and implications for screening. Eur J Vase Surg 1993;7(6):709-12.

Dryjski M, Driscoll J, Blair R, McGurrin M, Dagher F, Ceraolo M, et al. The small abdominal aortic aneurysm: the eternal dilemma. J Cardiovase Surg 1994;35:95-100.

Frame P, Fryback D, Patterson C. Screening for abdominal aortic aneurysm in men ages 60 to 80 years: a cost-effectiveness analysis. Ann Intern Med 1993; 119:411-416.

Hak E, Balm R, Eikelboom B, Akkersdijk, van der Graaf Y. Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening: an epidemiological point of view. Eur J Vase Endovase Surg 1996; 11 :270-78.

Khoo D, Ashton H, Scott R. Is screening once at age 65 an effective method for detection of abdominal aortic aneurysms? J Med Screening 1994; 1 :223-25.

Kyriakides C, Byrne J, Green S, Hulton N. Screening of abdominal aortic aneurysm: a pragmatic approach. Ann R Coli Surg Engl 2000;82:59-63.

Law M. Screening for abdominal aortic aneurysms. Brit Med Bull 1998;54(4) :903-13.

Lederle F, Johnson G, Wilson S, Chute E, et al. The aneurysm detection and management study screening program: validation cohort and final results. Areh Intern Med 2000; 160: 1425-30.

Lindholt J, Vammen S, Juul S, Henneberg E, Fasting H. The validity of ultrasonographic scanning as screening method for abdominal aortic aneurysm. Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg 1999; 17:472-75.Morris G, Hubbard C, Quick C. An abdominal aortic aneurysm screening programme for all males over the age of 50. Eur J Vase Surg 1994;8: 156-60.

Salo J, Soisalon-Soininen S, Bondestam S, Mattila P. Familial occurrence of abdominal aortic aneurysms. Ann Intern Med 1999;130(8):637-42..

St. Leger A, Spencely M, McCollum C, Mossa M. Screening for abdominal aortic aneurysm: a computer assisted cost-utility analysis. Eur J Vase Surg 1996; 11: 183-190.

Scott R, Wilson N, Ashton H, Kay D. Influence of screening on the incidence of ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysms: 5-year results of a randomized controlled study. Brit J Surg 1995;82: 1 066-70.

Shapira 0, Pasik S, Wassermann J, Barzilai N, Mashiah A. Ultrasound screening for abdominal aortic aneurysms in patients with atherosclerotic Peripheral Arterial Disease. J Cardiovase Surg 1990;31 : 170-2.

Smith F, Grimshaw G, Paterson I, Shearman C, Hamer J. Ultrasonographic screening for abdominal aortic aneurysm in an urban community. Brit J Surg 1994 March;81 (3):472.

Vasquez C, Sakalihasan N, D'Harcour J, Limet R. Routine ultrasound screening for abdominal aortic aneurysm among 65- and 75-year old men in a city of 200,000 inhabitants. Ann Vase Surg 1998; 12(6):544-549.

ilmink A, Quick C. Epidemiology and potential for prevention of abdominal aortic aneurysm. BritJ Surg 1998;85:155-162.