The ascending aortic aneurysm is a dilatation that occurs in the wall of this artery, caused by different factors such as the formation of atherosclerotic plaques, a consequence of high cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking, and other diseases of genetic origin.
The aorta is our main artery and its function is to distribute oxygenated blood to all other body parts through systemic circulation. It begins in the left ventricle, passes through the thorax and in its final part forms an arch in the abdomen from which the right and left iliac arteries exit.
According to the direction of blood flow, the aorta has four parts: ascending aorta, aortic arch, thoracic aorta and abdominal aorta. The ascending aorta is approximately 5 centimeters long and the coronary arteries are born there, responsible for the irrigation of the myocardium. The next portion is the aortic arch, where arteries such as the carotids and other vessels that supply the brain come from.
Aortic aneurysm is a silent disease, usually detected in routine exams such as Echocardiogram, X-ray, Tomography and Magnetic Resonance. The appearance of symptoms usually indicates a need for intervention.
The main symptoms of ascending aortic aneurysm are:
- Lack of breathe
- Chest or lower back pain
- Persistent cough
- Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
It is the surgery to correct an aortic aneurysm, indicated when the dilation grows and reaches more than 5 cm in length. Depending on the state of the aortic, it may need to be replaced. This surgery is performed by highly specialized surgeons using minimally invasive techniques.