ELi5 : If aneurysm is caused by weakness in the arterial wall, would an exercise could strengthen the wall?

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ELi5 : If aneurysm is caused by weakness in the arterial wall, would an exercise could strengthen the wall?

In: Biology

Not really. Your arteries aren’t really muscles. They don’t have a way strengthen with use. In fact there are many ways to damage or impede arteries. However regular exercise can decrease the likelihood of an aneurysm. As excercises helps keep blood pressure lower, which lowers stress on the blood vessels.

In addition to the other comment, the type of muscle that surrounds blood vessels is called smooth muscle. the ‘smoothness’ means it can not be strengthend or enlarged like skeletal muscle can. Skeletal muscle can be strengthen because it’s striated, smooth muscle is not. To gain strength more muscle fibers are needed, enlarging the muscle by adding more fibers (striations)

Aside from that, smooth muscle is completely controlled by our subconscious (autonomic nervous system) so we couldn’t exercise it anyway

Not really. It’s not so much weakness like we usually think of when we think of weak muscles.

It’s a weakness in the structural integrity of the vessel. It’s like if you build a wall out of bricks, but some of the bricks are made of cardboard. The first time it rains, that wall will collapse. No amount of exercise will help that wall, it’s fundamentally flawed.

It’s the same with an aneurysm. Something goes wrong in the wall of the vessel, and it becomes primed for collapse (or bursting, more accurately.) Exercise does not help because it can’t fix the root problem.