If you or a loved one have an aortic aneurysm or another condition affecting your aorta, it’s important to get timely treatment to prevent life-threatening complications – and it’s critical to get care from an expert team with deep experience.

At Sanger Heart & Vascular Institute’s Center for Aortic Disease, we lead the nation in treating patients with complex aortic disease – giving you the best chance of a good outcome.

Aortic Conditions We Treat

Our center treats diseases affecting any part of your aorta. We specialize in treating:

  • Aneurysms of the aorta, including thoracic aortic aneurysms that occur in the part of the aorta that runs through your chest, and abdominal aortic aneurysms that affect the section of the aorta that runs through your midsection. Aortic aneurysms happen when a section of the aorta – your body’s largest blood vessel – weakens and bulges out. This weakened section is at risk of tearing (aortic dissection) or bursting (aortic rupture), which can lead to life-threatening complications, such as internal bleeding or blocking the blood flow to important parts of your body. Aortic dissection and aortic rupture are emergencies that need immediate, fast treatment. Finding and treating an aortic aneurysm early lowers your chances of an aortic tear or rupture.
  • Genetic conditions that increase the risk for aortic disease, including bicuspid aortic valve disease, Marfan Syndrome, Loeys-Dietz Syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and Turner Syndrome.
  • Aortic dissection, a tear in the inner layer of your aorta. When blood gets behind the tear, it further separates the aorta’s inner and middle layers, increasing the chances of blocked blood flow, aortic rupture or other complications.
  • Aortic rupture, a breaking or bursting of the aorta that can cause extensive, life-threatening internal bleeding.
  • Aortic coarctation, a narrowing of the aorta that causes your heart to work harder to pump blood through the narrowed section. Aortic coarctation is usually something you’re born with, and it can range from mild (slightly narrow) to severe (very narrow).

Treating Your Aortic Disease

It’s critical to treat your aortic disease early to prevent serious emergencies like aortic tears and ruptures – but the unique nature of your condition determines the best treatment plan for you. Our specialized aortic surgeons carefully evaluate your aneurysm or condition to determine when it’s best to move forward with treatment, and when it’s best to wait.

From diagnosis and monitoring to treatment and follow-up, we oversee every aspect of your care. And since many aortic diseases have a genetic component, our team includes a dedicated geneticist who helps you determine the role genes play in your disease and can test family members for their unique risks.

Your Treatment Options

Our primary goal is to repair your aortic condition before it leads to emergency complications – and most of the time, we can do this with minimally invasive techniques that allow you to avoid open chest or abdominal surgery.

Aneurysm treatment options include:

  • TEVAR, thoracic endovascular aortic repair, which uses a catheter to place a stent (tube) within the thoracic (chest) section of the aorta and seal the aneurysm off from the inside. As a top-five center for national TEVAR volumes, we offer unmatched expertise.
  • EVAR, endovascular aortic repair, which uses a catheter to place a stent (tube) within the abdominal section of the aorta and seal the aneurysm off from the inside. We do more EVAR procedures than any center in the country, meaning more experience and better outcomes for you.
  • Open-heart surgery to repair aneurysms when minimally invasive approaches aren’t an option.
  • Emergency repair of aortic dissection or rupture through Code Dissection and Code Rupture, award-winning care protocols that deliver fast, lifesaving treatment.
  • Clinical trials that give you access to minimally invasive repair techniques that aren’t widely available elsewhere.

For other aortic diseases, we offer:

  • Aortic root replacement, which removes the diseased portion of the aortic root and reconstructs it using a custom-designed synthetic conduit (tube). Your heart’s aortic valve may remain or can be replaced with a prosthetic valve if needed.
  • Ascending aortic replacement, which removes the diseased section of the ascending aorta and reconstructs it with a custom-designed synthetic conduit. If the aortic root or aortic arch also needs replacing or reconstructing, this can be done at the same time.
  • Aortic arch reconstruction or replacement, which removes the diseased section of the aortic arch and reconstructs it with a custom-designed synthetic conduit. Our team has deep experience in the complicated circulation management the procedure calls for.
  • Aortic coarctation repair, which removes the narrowed portion of the aorta and replaces it with an open synthetic conduit. Treatment is delivered either through open surgery, or through a catheter inserted through the groin artery and ballooned open to relieve the obstruction.
 

When Every Second Counts


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