Cardiovascular and Interventional Radiological Society of Europe



Endovascular aneurysm repair involves treating a bulge (also reffered to as aneurysm) or widened area in a blood vessel. The treatment aims at getting the aneurysm away from flowing blood. Endoleaks are a complication that can result after the aneurysm repair procedure, in which blood leaks back into the aneurysmal sac. Endoleaks can cause an aneurysm to become larger and even rupture. Endoleaks are classified into five different types, and can occur in up to 25% of patients.


Patients with endoleaks will often not experience any symptoms. If a patient who has had endovascular aneurysm repair is kept on surveillance by ultrasound or CT scan, and if this shows an expansion of the aneurysm, further investigation is necessary.


Patients who have had aortic aneurysm repair require lifelong imaging surveillance. Various imaging techniques can be used to diagnose endoleaks.


Treatment of endoleaks depends on the type of endoleak. The specific characteristics of the endoleak and the patient’s ability to tolerate surgical repair determine the selection of the treatment method. Where possible, minimally invasive treatments have become the preferred approach, and involve repairing the endoleak by preventing blood flow to the aneurysm.