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Coarctation Treatment



Coarctation is often

treated in infancy or

childhood, but may also

be found in adults.

Thoracic Aortic Disease (TAD) - What is Aortic Coarctation? Coarctation or Narrowing of the Aorta Aortic coarctation means that a section of the aorta is narrow, usually the part of the descending aorta just past the arch. Statistics vary, but coarctation may be present along with a bicuspid aortic valv. It is often found and treated in the early years of life. It is possible to reach adulthood without symptoms, because other blood vessels take over some of the blood flow that would normally go through the aorta (collateral circulation).  However, because blood is trying to flow through a narrow opening, pressure may still build up. This increased pressure in the ascending aorta and its branches to the brain may cause a break in a fragile vessel in the brain, resulting in bleeding and stroke. The heart muscle (left ventricle) may also thicken as it pumps against the resistance due to the narrowed aorta, and could potentially cause diastolic dysfunction or heart failure. Surgery should be planned before complications such as this happen.
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