• The most important factors determining the prevalence of AAA are sex and age (Fig. 5.1.2) .
• AAA in patients younger than 50-55 years of age usually is part of a well-defined disease entity such as Marfan's syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.
• If the abdominal aorta is normal at 65 years of age, later aneurysmal development is rare, at least before the age of 75 .
• AAAs below 5.0-5.5 cm in diameter seldom rupture, and in a practical clinical setting the size-specific prevalence is important (Table 5.1.2).
• The age-specific prevalence in the populations in Western Europe seems to have increased since the 1950s. In
Fig. 5.1.2 Prevalence of AAA related to age and sex. Data based on an autopsy study with an autopsy rate of 83%. From Bengts-son et al. 
Table 5.1.1 Prevalence of AAA among 73,451 American veterans aged 50-79 years. Ultrasonographic diagnosis men, after the age of 55 years the prevalence increases rapidly, peaking at about 80-85 years at about 6%. In women AAAs appear 10-15 years later and are 2-4 times less common than in men, although these figures depend on which definition of AAA is used.
• The prevalence detected in ultrasonography screening studies is in good accordance with autopsy findings in populations with a high autopsy rate [2, 27, 32].
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