All men over 65 in Wales will be offered a free test to check for a life-threatening condition called abdominal aortic aneurysm. It's six times more common in men than women and ruptured aneurysms led to 246 deaths in Wales in 2010.
The aorta is the main blood vessel that supplies blood to the body. Sometimes, as people grow older, the wall of the aorta in the abdomen can become weak and stretch to form an aneurysm. When this happens there is a risk that the aorta may split or tear.
– Lylwela Wilson, Head of the Wales AAA Screening Programme
There are no signs and symptoms of having an AAA so most men with one will know nothing about it until it ruptures, and their chances of surviving will sadly be very poor.
The screening programme aims to reduce this risk by providing men with a simple, painless ultrasound scan that will detect whether an AAA is present.
The screening takes only a few minutes but it really could help save your life.
Letters will start being sent out from 1st May 2013 to all eligible men.