Open Surgical Options for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm


Open surgery to repair your aorta may be necessary when an AAA reaches a significant size. If an AAA becomes large and is not repaired, it can rupture (burst). This can be a life-threatening emergency.

To surgically repair an AAA, the surgeon makes a large incision in your abdomen so they can access the aorta. They will use special tools to control blood flow around the aneurysm. The surgeon will remove the damaged part of the aorta. Then, they will replace it with a graft. A graft is a tube made of synthetic material that lets blood flow through it.

Diagram of the abdominal aorta, an aneurysm, and a graft in place.

Meet the Aortic Aneurysm Team

Clinical Team looking at computer tablets
The Northwestern Medicine Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute is a nationally recognized destination for those who require highly specialized cardiovascular care.