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ROANOKE, Va. — A multifaceted campaign that advocates for increased awareness and preventive screening for abdominal aortic aneurysms once again is hitting the road with an annual screening tour.
The Find the AAAnswers campaign will make its first stop on Saturday at a Kmart pharmacy location in Roanoke, Va., followed by nine additional Kmart locations across the country. The campaign will offer free screenings to those interested in learning more about the disease.
A screening for AAA is quick and noninvasive, involving a simple ultrasound of the abdomen, similar to a pregnancy ultrasound. At select Kmart pharmacies across the country, preregistered people will visit a 40-ft. customized RV to receive a screening by a vascular technologist in a private exam room. Local board-certified vascular surgeons will volunteer on-site to answer questions and distribute educational materials about AAA disease.
AAA is a blood-filled bulge or ballooning of the abdominal segment of the aorta, the large artery that carries blood from the heart to the lower part of the body. Over time, the bulge, known as an aneurysm, can become weak and burst unexpectedly with fatal consequences.
"During last fall's screening tour, we screened more than 1,000 at-risk individuals and educated countless others about the seriousness of vascular disease. The Find the AAAnswers Coalition is excited to offer these preventive services again to the public at no cost," said R. Clement Darling, treasurer of the Society for Vascular Surgery; chief of the division of vascular surgery at Albany Medical Center Hospital and a Find the AAAnswers Coalition member. "Because in many cases there are no warning signs, preventive screening for AAA is an effective way to detect a potentially life-threatening aneurysm."
According to the Society for Vascular Surgery, when detected early, at least 95% of AAAs can be managed and successfully treated.
For a complete list of Kmart pharmacies hosting the Find the AAAnswers tour, click here.