Share This Article:

Experiences of Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm—In and Out on Five Minutes

Abstract Full-Text HTML XML Download Download as PDF (Size:490KB) PP. 1385-1395
DOI: 10.4236/health.2014.612170    3,305 Downloads   4,003 Views   Citations


Background: The purpose of AAA screening is to prevent rupture and mortality. Screening for life-threatening diseases is a double-edged sword. The aim of this study is to describe 65-year-old men’s experiences of health related quality of life and anxiety after screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm, and experiences of information and reasons for not participating. Methods: 368 men answered Short Form 36 (SF-36), and anxiety and depression scale (HAD). 72 telephone interviews were conducted with the participants and 77 with those who declined to take part in the screening programme. Results: The SF-36 domains of Physical Function and Role limitations due to emotional health problems were significantly better for men who had undergone screening compared to a matched population. Compared to non-smokers, smokers had lower values in the SF-36 domains of general health perceptions, social functioning, role limitations due to emotional health problems and mental health. 80% of patients did not experience any form of anxiety/panic in connection with the screening invitation. Of the men who did not participate, 56% stated that they would like to be screened or had already undergone the examination. Conclusion: The men who underwent the investigation were healthier in some of the SF-36 domains than the general population. The participants did not experience any great anxiety before the screening and despite the short duration of the examination.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Pettersson, M. , Gedda, B. and Berndsson, I. (2014) Experiences of Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm—In and Out on Five Minutes. Health, 6, 1385-1395. doi: 10.4236/health.2014.612170.


[1] Heikkinen, M., Salenius, J.P. and Auvinen, O. (2002) Ruptured Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm in a Well-Defined Geographic Area. Journal of Vascular Surgery, 36, 291-296.
[2] Brodersen, J., Jorgensen, K.J. and Gotzsche, P.C. (2010) The Benefits and Harms of Screening for Cancer with a Focus on Breast Screening. Polskie Archiwum Medycyny Wewnetrznej, 120, 89-94.
[3] Stewart-Brown, S. and Farmer, A. (1997) Screening Could Seriously Damage Your Health. BMJ, 314, 533-534.
[4] Ilic, D., Neuberger, M.M., Djulbegovic, M. and Dahm, P. (2013) Screening for Prostate Cancer. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 1, Article ID: CD004720.
[5] Gotzsche, P.C. and Nielsen, M. (2009) Screening for Breast Cancer with Mammography. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 4, Article ID: CD001877.
[6] Lindholm, E., Berglund, B., Kewenter, J. and Haglind, E. (1997) Worry Associated with Screening for Colorectal Carcinomas. Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology, 32, 238-245.
[7] Lindholdt, J.S., Vammen, S., Fasting, H. and Henneberg, E.W. (2000) Optimal Interval Screening and Surveillance of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm. European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, 20, 369-373.
[8] Scott, R.A. (1995) Influence of Screening on the Incidence of Ruptured Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm: 5-Year Results of Randomized Controlled Study. British Journal of Surgery, 82, 1066-1070.
[9] Edwards, A., Evans, R., Dundon, J., Haigh, S., Hood, K. and Elwyn, G. (2006) Personalised Risk Communication for Informed Decision Making about Taking Screening Tests. Cochrane Database System Review, 4, Article ID: CD001865.
[10] Irwig, L., McCaffery, K., Salkeld, G. and Bossuyt, P. (2006) Informed Choice for Screening: Implications for Evaluation. British Medical Journal, 332, 1148-1150.
[11] Ashton, H.A., Buxton, M.J., Day, N.E., Kim, L.G., Marteau, T.M., Scott, R.A., et al. (2002) The Multicenter Aneurysm Screening Study (MASS) into the Effects of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening on Mortality in Men: A Randomised Controlled Trial. Lancet, 16, 1531-1539.
[12] Cosford, P.A., Leng, G.C. and Thomas, J. (2011) Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.
[13] Mastracci, T. and Cina, C. (2007) Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm in Canada Society for Vascular Surgery. Journal of Vascular Surgery, 45, 1268-1276.
[14] Schermerhorn, M., Zwolak, R.,Velazquez, O., Velazques, O., Makaroun, M., Fairman, R., et al. (2008) Ultra Sound Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm in Medicare Beneficiaries. Annual of Vascular Surgery, 22, 16-24.
[15] Lederle, F.A. (2008) Screening for AAA in the USA. Scandinavian Journal of Surgery, 97, 139-141.
[16] Wanhainen, A., Rosen, C., Rutegard, J., Bergqvist, D. and Bjorck, M. (2004) Low Quality of Life Prior to Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm: A Possible Risk Factor for Negative Mental Effects. Annuals of Vascular Surgery, 18, 287-293.
[17] Lindholm, E., Brevinge, H., Bergh, C.H., Korner, U. and Lundholm, K. (2003) Relationships between Self-Reported Health Related Quality of Life and Measures of Standardized Exercise Capacity and Metabolic Efficiency in a Middle-Aged and Aged Healthy Population. Quality of Life research, 12, 575-582.
[18] Lindholt, J.S., Vammen, S., Fasting, H. and Henneberg, E.W. (2000) Psychological Consequences of Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm and Conservative Treatment of Small Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms. European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, 20, 79-83.
[19] Reventlow, S.D., Hvas, L. and Malterud, K. (2006) Making the Invisible Body Visible. Bone Scans, Osteoporosis and Women’s Bodily Experiences. Social Science & Medicine, 62, 2720-2731.
[20] Adelswärd, V. and Sachs, L. (1996) A Nurse in Preventive Work. Dilemmas of Health Information Talks. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 10, 45-52.
[21] Bengtsson, H. and Bergqvist, D. (1993) Ruptured Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm: A Population-Based Study. Journal of Vascular Surgery, 18, 74-80.
[22] Schweikert, B., Hunger, M., Meisinger, C., Konig, H.H., Gapp, O. and Holle, R. (2009) Quality of Life Several Years after Myocardial Infarction: Comparing the MONICA/KORA Registry to the General Population. European Heart Journal, 30, 436-443.
[23] Lupton, D. (1999) Risk. Routledge, London.
[24] SOU (2000) Hälsa på lika villkor—Nationella mål för folkhälsan. Nationella folkhälsokommittén. 91.
[25] Taft, C., Karlsson, J. and Sullivan, M. (2004) Performance of the Swedish SF-36 Version 2.0. Quality of Life Research, 13, 251-256.
[26] Ware Jr., J.E. and Sher-bourne, C.D. (1992) The MOS 36-Item Short form Health Survey (SF-36): I. Conceptual Framework and Item Selection. Medical Care, 30, 473-483.
[27] Sullivan, M., Karlsson, J. and Ware, J.E. (1995) The Swedish SF-36 Health Survey—I. Evaluation of Data Quality, Scaling Assumptions, Reliability and Construct Validity across General Populations in Sweden. Social Science & Medicine, 41, 1349-1158.
[28] Brazier, J.E., Harper, R., Jones, N.M., O’cathain, A., Thomas, K.J., Usherwood, T. and Westlake, L. (1992) Validating the SF-36 Health Survey Questionnaire: New Outcome Measure for Primary Care. British Medical Journal, 305, 160-164.
[29] Zigmond, A.S. and Snaith, R.P. (1983) The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 67, 361-370.
[30] ICN: Ethical Code of Nursing (2003) Svensk sjuksköterskeförening. International Council of Nurses: Place Jean-Marteau, 3, Geneva.
[31] Eriksson, K. (1994) Theories of Caring as Health: Caring as Healing. D.A. Gant & Boykin, p3-0. National League for Nursing Press, New York.
[32] Hansson, A., Brodersen, J., Reventlow, S. and Pettersson, M. (2012) Opening Pandora’s Box: The Experiences of Having an Asymptomatic Aortic Aneurysm under Surveillance. Health, Risk & Society, 14, 341-359.
[33] Berterö, C., Carlsson, P. and Lundgren, F. (2010) Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm, a One-Year Follow up: An Interview Study. Journal of Vascular Nursing, 28, 97-101.
[34] Pettersson, M. and Bergbom, I. (2012) To Be under Control: A Qualitative Study of Patients Experiences Living with the Diagnosis of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm. Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 28, 387-395.
[35] Raffle, A.E. and Grey, J.A.M. (2007) Screening: Evidence and Practice. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2018 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.