VP Cheney’s Popliteal Aneurysm Surgery

From CNN, comes the good news that VP Cheney’s popliteal aneurysm surgery was a success. Their article has good information in it, including something I hadn’t known, that he had bilateral (both side) aneurysms, and they did them both at the same time.

Since popliteal artery aneurysms aren’t very common complaints in the ED, I decided to read about them, and here’s some good information from "Aneurysm Center":

Popliteal artery aneurysms are the most common peripheral artery aneurysms, comprising 70% to 85% of the total aneurysms in the periphery.1-3 More than 95% of peripheral artery aneurysms occur in males, and the average age of patients at presentation is 65 years. ….Although the standard treatment of popliteal artery aneurysms has been open repair, there are increasing reports in the literature of endovascular management.

At the time of presentation, approximately 50% to 85% of popliteal artery aneurysms are symptomatic, and most are 3 cm to 4 cm in diameter…

And, why do we need to fix these? They cause thromboembolisms (clots inside the vessel), and:

Amputation rates of approximately 25% have been reported with thromboembolism.


I’ll let you read about the types of repair in the article, and I didn’t see what type of aneurysm Cheney had.

CNN went a little nuts toward the end of their article, saying he was at risk of blocking circulation in the leg or causing a stroke. The first is correct, but there’s no way a popliteal aneurysm could cause a stroke.


PS: I wrote this on the mac mini, using MarsEdit, which is one slick little program. Unfortunately, it wouldn’t post from there. so it was cut-and-paste. I’ll figure it out, eventually.

I found my answer here: Submit Response. Darn clever security people.


  1. Every blog post I make is written in MarsEditand read in NetNewsWire. My blog runs on Manila, and MarsEdit works near perfectly, and I have had no problems.

    The MarsEdit mailing list sometimes has posts from users on Movable Type, so if you intend to use MarsEdit frequently it might be a good idea to subscribe to the list.