What is a CT dissection?

CT. CT, especially with arterial contrast enhancement and specifically computed tomography angiography (CTA) of the aorta is the investigation of choice, able not only to diagnose and classify the dissection but also to evaluate for distal complications. It has reported sensitivity and specificity of nearly 100% 3,5.

Can you see a dissection on CT?

The accuracy of CT in the diagnosis of aortic dissection is high with sensitivity and specificity ranging around 98–100%.

What happens during a dissection?

An aortic dissection is a serious condition in which a tear occurs in the inner layer of the body’s main artery (aorta). Blood rushes through the tear, causing the inner and middle layers of the aorta to split (dissect). If the blood goes through the outside aortic wall, aortic dissection is often deadly.

What is a dissection surgery?

In surgery, damaged sections of the aorta are removed and a synthetic graft is often used to reconstruct the damaged vessel. The objective in the surgical management of aortic dissection is to remove the most severely damaged segments of the aorta, and to eliminate the entry of blood into the tear.

What is the difference between an aneurysm and a dissection?

Aneurysms can occur in any vessel, most notably in the brain, heart, thoracic aorta, and abdominal aorta. A dissection is a tear of the inside layer of a blood vessel wall that allows blood to flow between the layers that make up the vessel wall and separate these layers.

How is Aortography performed?

During aortography, performed in a hospital, you’ll be mildly sedated while your doctor threads a catheter from your groin or arm into the aorta. The doctor then injects a special dye into the catheter, while X-rays take images to see how the dye moves through the aorta.

Does CT show aortic dissection?

Enhanced CT scan shows dissection of the entire intima in the thoracic descending aorta (arrow). (11) Filiform true lumen. Enhanced CT scan shows a filiform true lumen in the thoracic descending aorta (arrow).

What is the survival rate of an aortic dissection?

Short-term and long-term survival rates after acute type A aortic dissection (TA-AAD) are unknown. Previous studies have reported survival rates between 52% and 94% at 1 year and between 45% and 88% at 5 years.

Can you survive aortic dissection?

Aortic dissection is life threatening. The condition can be managed with surgery if it is done before the aorta ruptures. Less than one half of people with a ruptured aorta survive. Those who survive will need lifelong, aggressive treatment of high blood pressure.

Can you live a normal life after an aortic dissection?

With excellent blood pressure control and conscious limits to physical activity, you can continue to live a long, full life after a dissection. This would include returning to most jobs.

How long does aortic dissection surgery take?

A typical open-heart procedure takes from 4 to 6 hours, in some cases up to 8 hours; patients are then maintained under general anesthesia for an additional 4 to 6 hours.

Which type of aortic dissection is worse?

Type A is the most common type of aortic dissection and is more likely to be acute than chronic. This makes it more dangerous than type B dissections because it is more likely to cause the aorta to rupture, leading to a potentially fatal heart condition.

Is aortic dissection painful?

Recognizing an aortic dissection can be difficult because the symptoms can be confused with a heart attack or pulmonary embolism (a blockage in the lung). The primary sign that you could have a dissection is pain. Once the aortic tear begins, you will typically feel severe pain almost instantaneously.

What is life expectancy after aortic dissection surgery?

Although specific information about overall life expectancy after aortic dissection repair is not available, a recent study from the International Registry of Acute Aortic Dissection reported that about 85% of patients who have undergone successful repair of acute dissection involving the ascending aorta remain alive …

Does aortic dissection run in families?

About 20 percent of people with thoracic aortic aneurysm and dissection have a genetic predisposition to it, meaning it runs in the family. This type is known as familial thoracic aneurysm and dissection.

Is aortic dissection sudden?

Acute dissection of the aorta can be one of the most dramatic cardiovascular emergencies. Classically, aortic dissection presents as sudden, severe chest, back, or abdominal pain that is characterised as ripping or tearing in nature. However, a timely diagnosis can be elusive in the event of an atypical presentation.

Which arm has higher BP in aortic dissection?

After being admitted to the Intensive Care Unit, the mean arterial pressure on the left arm was noted to be significant higher. On physical examination, both lower limbs were dusky in appearance because of poor perfusion.

Can you have an aortic dissection and not know it?

Symptoms of chronic aortic dissection persist beyond 14 days of the initial event, when the first signs of dissection may be noticed. These symptoms can include abdominal, back, or chest pain. There also may be no symptoms.

Will an EKG show an aortic dissection?

An electrocardiogram (ECG) may show complications of dissection, including a heart attack. The chest x-ray may show an enlarged aorta. However, both the ECG and chest x-ray may be completely normal in aortic dissection and cannot diagnose or exclude aortic dissection.

Does high blood pressure cause aortic dissection?

Most aortic dissections occur because high blood pressure causes the artery’s wall to deteriorate. People have sudden, excruciating pain, most commonly across the chest but also in the back between the shoulder blades. Doctors usually do x-rays or computed tomography to confirm the diagnosis.

Can I drive after aortic dissection?

Driving is not possible until the aortic dissection diagnosed has been surgically repaired, and during the subsequent period if the patient is not stabilised or has complications.

Can an aortic dissection heal on its own?

The dissection may slowly heal on its own or cause a rupture in the aortic wall. Depending on the size, such a rupture can kill someone instantly or within a couple of days.

How serious is aortic dissection surgery?

Aortic dissection is a very complicated condition. Untreated, an aortic dissection can lead to death. A dissection that involves the ascending aorta almost always requires emergency open-heart surgery to repair the vessel and prevent death.