After Endovascular Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Repair

You have had a procedure to repair an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). An AAA happens when a weakened part of a blood vessel in your belly (abdominal) area expanded like a balloon. During an endovascular repair, your healthcare provider created 2 small cuts (incisions) near your groin. A thin, flexible tube (catheter) was threaded into the artery at the incision. A graft was placed inside the catheter and guided toward the damaged part of your aorta to prevent more problems.

Home care

Recommendations for taking care of yourself at home include: 

  • Don't do strenuous activity for 7 to 10 days after your surgery.

  • Ask your healthcare provider when you can expect to return to work.

  • Slowly increase your activity. It may take some time for you to return to your normal activities.

  • Don’t drive for 2 weeks after surgery, especially if you are still taking opioid pain medicines. Ask someone to take you to any appointments.

  • Check your incision every day for signs of infection. These include swelling, redness, fluid leaking, or warmth.

  • Keep your incision clean. Wash it gently with soap and water while you shower.

  • Don’t swim or use a hot tub until your healthcare provider says it's OK.

  • Don’t lift anything heavier than 5 pounds for 4 weeks after surgery.

  • Don't sit or stand for long periods without moving your legs and feet.

  • Keep your feet up when you sit in a chair.

  • Take your medicines exactly as directed. Don’t skip doses.

When to call your healthcare provider

Call your healthcare provider right away if any of these occur:

  • Redness, pain, swelling, or fluid leaking from your incision

  • Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, or as advised by your provider

  • Sudden coldness, pain, or paleness in your leg

  • Loss of feeling in your legs

  • Severe or sudden stomach pain

  • Upset stomach (nausea) or vomiting

  • Trouble breathing

  • Pain or heaviness in your chest or arms

  • Any abnormal bleeding

  • Unable to pee

  • Bloody poop or bloody diarrhea

Follow-up

  • Make a follow-up appointment to have your incisions checked and staples removed within 7 to 10 days.

  • Make follow-up appointments as advised.

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