Aortic dissection occurs when the blood enters the arterial wall between the inner and middle layers of the aorta. This condition may occur when the inner layer of the aorta tears, allowing blood to flow from the main area of the artery into the wall. This risk is that the aortic dissection could channel blood out of the aorta, causing arterial rupture.
Serious complications may occur if the aortic dissection sends blood in the area around the lungs or the heart.
The Desert Vein & Vascular Institute (DVVI), led by vascular surgeons Dr. Pushpinder Sivia and Dr. Son Ha Yu, provides treatments for aortic dissection and other vein treatment procedures to patients in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, and La Quinta.
Chronic hypertension may put stress on the aortic tissue, making it vulnerable to tearing. Some people may have a weakened or oversized aorta by birth. In rare cases, traumatic injury may cause an aortic dissection. Two types of aortic dissections include:
This type of aortic dissection occurs when there is a tear in the area of the aorta where it exits the heart or a tear in the ascending aorta, which could extend into the abdomen.
This involves a tear in the lower aorta only, which may also extend into the abdomen.
Some of the key risk factors that may contribute to an aortic dissection include:
- High blood pressure
- Surgical procedures done near the heart
- Traumatic injury
- A narrowed aorta
- An aorta with a faulty valve
- Substance abuse
An aortic dissection requires emergency medical treatment. Depending on the area of the aorta involved, the vascular expert may include surgery or medications as part of the therapy. For lower aortic dissection, medical management is a preferably treatment options, unless there is a leakage or rupture.
Medical management includes bringing blood pressure under control and prescribing a course of beta blockers. Narcotics and opiates may have to be used to manage the pain.
Surgery for Type A Aortic Dissection
The surgeon will remove the maximum possible part of the dissected aorta, block the flow of blood into the aortic wall, and perform aortic reconstruction with a graft. If the aortic valve has leakage, it will be replaced at this time. The new valve will be positioned inside the graft used for aorta reconstruction.
Surgery for Type B Aortic Dissection
The procedure is not very different from that of the Type A surgery. In some cases, the surgeon may place stents in the aorta to repair a complicated case of Type B aortic dissection. Following the surgery in both cases, the patient may be required to use blood pressure lowering drugs for life. They will also have to maintain regular follow-up tests periodically to monitor their condition.
DVVI receives patients from Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, La Quinta, Inland Empire, Riverside, California, and other towns and neighborhoods in this area of The Golden State for aorta dissection and other vascular and vein treatment procedures.
For more information on vein disease, call the vein specialists at Desert Vein and Vascular Institute today at 1.800.VARICOSE to schedule an appointment.