First Forth Valley Patient Gets New AAA Scan

The first patient in Forth Valley to undergo a new a new life-saving ultrasound scan for men has described the process as “Painless and very easy.”

Clifford Deans, who was given the all clear for an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) after attending the first screening clinic at Stirling Community Hospital,  said he ‘felt a glow ‘knowing there was nothing wrong.

The retired finance director from Doune, who is pictured with sonographer Heather McLeod, explained: “It’s quite an honour to have been the first man in Forth Valley to have one of these new scans. An aortic aneurysm is not something I ever worried about however most people wouldn’t realise that they had a problem and if there’s a simple test that can be done it can only be beneficial.”

An aneurysm forms when the aorta, the main artery which supplies blood to the body from the heart, becomes weak and balloons out.  As the wall of the aorta stretches it becomes weaker and could rupture. This leads to life-threatening internal bleeding and in 8 out of l0 cases could prove fatal. Small or medium aneurysms rarely cause trouble but it is important to monitor them in case they get bigger. About one in 20 men in Scotland have an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm, most of whom are unaware.

Weekly AAA screening clinics for men aged 65 are now being held in community hospitals in Stirling, Falkirk and Clackmannanshire and around 1400 men across the area are expected to attend over the next year. Men aged 65 in Forth Valley will receive an invitation to attend their local screening clinic and men aged over 65 can self-refer for a scan by contacting NHS Inform on 0800 22 44 88.

The ultrasound scan takes just 10 minutes and results are available instantly. Around 95% of men are expected to have a normal scan and will exit the screening programme. Further information about the new AAA national screening programme can be found at