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Aneurysms are focal abnormal dilatation of a blood vessel. They typically occur in arteries; venous aneurysms are rare. Aneurysms may also occur in the heart.
- hereditary connective tissue disorders
- myocardial infarction: may cause left a ventricular aneurysm
- flow-related (in cerebral AVM, contralateral ICA occlusion, etc.)
Morphologically there are two main types of aneurysms. The morphology is not specific for any cause:
- saccular aneurysm: eccentric, involving only a portion of the circumference of the vessel wall (e.g. cerebral berry aneurysm)
- fusiform aneurysm: concentric, involving the full circumference of the vessel wall
Occasionally a 3rd type, serpentine aneurysm has been classified as a separate entity 3.
Treatment and prognosis
- distal thromboembolism
- pressure effects
History and etymology
The word aneurysm traces its roots back to ancient Greek, specifically the word ἀνεύρυσμα (aneurysma), literally translating as an 'aperture'. It is itself a compound construction, derived from two roots, 'ἄνω-' (ano) meaning 'up' and 'εὐρύς-' (eurys), meaning 'wide' 4,5.
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- 4. Antoniou G, Antoniou A, Antoniou S, Lazarides M. A Historical Perspective of Medical Terminology of Aortic Aneurysm. J Vasc Surg. 2011;54(5):1527-8. doi:10.1016/j.jvs.2011.04.036 - Pubmed
- 5. John C. Traupman. The Bantam New College Latin & English Dictionary. (2007) ISBN: 9780553590128 - Google Books