Nursing Student Class Projects (Formerly MSN)

Academic Term


Document Type


Course Number

NURS 5330

Course Name

Advanced Pathophysiology

Professor’s Name

Dr. Chovan


Aneurysm, pathophysiology, aortic aneurysm risk factors, case study, nursing interventions

Subject Categories

Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing


An aneurysm is a bulging or outpouching of the vessel wall which can progress to a dissection or a tear in the vessel wall. There are two types of classification for aortic aneurysms based on the Standford classification: type A involving the ascending aorta, and type B involving the descending aorta. Major risk factors for aortic aneurysms are hypertension, smoking, and male gender. Aortic aneurysms can be asymptomatic or include a wide range of symptoms such as vague back pain that radiates, and shortness of breath. The overarching pathophysiology is inflammation causing a breakdown in elastin and collagen. Inflammation, oxidative stress, vascular smooth muscle apoptosis, and proteases lead to further inflammation and vessel wall breakdown through inflammatory mediators such as IL-6, MCP-1 and T-cells. A case study of a 51-year-old male with classic risk factors and signs of an aortic aneurysm is discussed. Nursing implications are based on either medical or post-surgical management. In conclusion, aortic aneurysms are dilated areas of the vessel wall which are weakened by inflammatory mediators leading to further dilation and eventual dissection and rupture which are medical emergencies showing signs of hypovolemic shock.

Included in

Nursing Commons



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