Aneurysm screening programme set for roll-out

Screening Aneurysms involve the abnormal enlargement of the abdominal aorta blood vessel

A screening programme that aims to spot men at risk of a potentially fatal condition is to be rolled out across Scotland.

Men aged 65 will be offered a scan for signs of an abdominal aortic aneurysm in an effort to cut death rates.

In Scotland about 5% of men aged between 65 and 75 are believed to be at risk.

Figures indicate that when an aneurysm ruptures, 50%-80% of patients die despite access to medical treatment.

Ministers said the programme could save 170 lives a year by finding and treating aneurysms early.

'Hidden killer'

Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon said: "Abdominal aortic aneurysms are a hidden killer which affects one in 20 men in Scotland, most of whom will be unaware that they have the condition.

"Sadly, the first sign of a problem for many men will be when the aneurysm ruptures and, by that time, it's often too late - if left unscreened more than 8 in 10 ruptures can prove fatal.

"But a simple 10-minute scan can detect the aneurysm, enabling treatment to begin and saving hundreds of lives each year."

The programme's annual running cost will be about £2m a year, once roll-out is completed by December 2013.

The service is expected to be cost-neutral, as screening should mean fewer emergency operations will need to be performed.

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Scotland stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • WomenBling and bags

    From luxury goods to expensive fundraisers - discover how the mega-rich in Indonesia spend it big

Programmes

  • Narrow boats on Regent's Canal, LondonThe Travel Show Watch

    Explore London’s industrial past on a narrowboat trip along the atmospheric Regent’s Canal

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.