Aortic dissection: definition
The aorta is the main artery of the chest: it comes from the heart and carries blood to the various organs. Aortic dissection is a tear in the aortic wall extending rapidly over a length variable, and whose prognosis is dramatic in the absence of specialized care quickly.
Aortic Dissection: Causes
Two predisposing factors are high blood pressure: it probably acts by weakening the aortic wall by mechanical stress it imposes (present in 80% of cases). An abnormal structure of the aortic wall associated with certain rare diseases. In some cases, the dissection occurs in the aftermath of major chest trauma. More rarely, dissection can occur in the context of pregnancy (the mechanism that facilitates the dissection during pregnancy is not well known).
Aortic dissection: symptoms
The most common sign is chest pain: early generally brutal and intense, the general circulation in the back and legs (the pain is said to migratory), which may be extended. It is sometimes accompanied by a surge in blood pressure, or an initial loss of consciousness.
Aortic dissection: Prevention
There is no prevention.
Aortic dissection: review
Additional tests must be conducted in cardiac emergency, electrocardiogram, echocardiogram or by standard trans-oesophageal, chest CT or MRI, angiography.
Aortic Dissection: Treatment
Aortic dissection is a surgical emergency: the operation is to replace the aorta dissected by a synthetic tube. Post-operative monitoring should be particularly strict with correction of risk factors (smoking, hypertension, hyperlipidemia).
Aortic dissection: evolution
The prognosis is severe (30% mortality), and the hospital should take place urgently. The main complications are essentially the rupture of the aortic wall (and serious internal bleeding), and the extension of the tear to the other arteries.
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