An abdominal aortic aneurysm usually causes a deep, constant pain in the abdomen, the side of the abdomen or in the back, according to Mayo Clinic. It also sometimes causes a pulsating sensation around the navel. The pain typically occurs as the aneurysm starts to enlarge. Severe, sudden pain in the abdomen or lower back is sometimes a sign that the aneurysm is about to rupture, explains the Society for Vascular Surgery.
An abdominal aortic aneurysm is an enlarged area in the aorta, which is a large blood vessel that runs from the heart to the center of the abdomen and supplies the lower part of the body with blood, notes the SVS. An aneurysm occurs when a part of the vessel wall becomes weakened, and the pressure of the blood flowing through the vein causes it to bulge out like a balloon. The gravest danger associated with an abdominal aortic aneurysm is rupture and life-threatening bleeding. When this occurs, the person typically feels suddenly weak and dizzy, has severe pain, and quickly loses consciousness.
Doctors don't know what causes the aorta to weaken and cause an aneurysm, but they think that smoking, atherosclerosis, high blood pressure and inflammation play a role, states the SVS. Being a man over the age of 60 or having a close relative who had an aortic aneurysm are also predisposing factors.