Comprehensive Care for Aortic Conditions
Catholic Health's Aortic Center offers the latest advances in cardiac imaging designed to specifically target the diagnosis of aortic conditions.
The Aortic Center is located at:
- St. Francis Hospital & Heart Center® (Roslyn, NY)
- St. Francis Heart Center at Good Samaritan University Hospital (West Islip, NY)
Call 833-67-AORTA (833-672-6782) to schedule an appointment.
Understanding Aneurysms and Dissections
Aneurysm. A bulge in an artery caused by a weakened vessel wall.
Dissection. A tear within the lining of an artery.
The term “aortopathy” refers to diseases of the aorta, including aneurysms and dissections, particularly those that run in families.
Aneurysms and dissections in the thoracic aorta are rare, but around 20% are linked to family history. Some familial aneurysms and dissections are linked to genetic diseases such as Marfan syndrome, Loeys-Dietz syndrome or Ehlers Danlos syndrome.
Others may be genetic that causes only the aneurysm and no other symptoms. A person with a first-degree relative who has a thoracic aortic aneurysm has up to a four-fold risk of having one also.
Surgical treatment for aortic aneurysms and dissections depends on the patient and their diagnosis. Typically, the surgery is minimally invasive to speed recovery and return patients to an active lifestyle.
CT Angiography. CT angiography uses a CT scanner to produce detailed images of both blood
vessels and tissues in various parts of the body. During the exam, contrast material is injected through a small catheter placed in a vein of the arm.
A radiologic technologist will capture high-resolution CT images timed with each heartbeat to perfectly visualize the aorta.
MRI. A MRI allows doctors to acquire images similar to CT scanning but without radiation exposure
and for patients intolerant of contrast dye. This allows doctors to diagnose and appropriately treat
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, frequently diagnosis of syndromic conditions is not made until the third or fourth decade of life.
Yes, appropriate treatment, guided by genetic testing can allow lower risk and minimally invasive interventions to prevent aortic rupture.
Begin a program of aortic imaging surveillance and follow regularly with an aortic specialist.
- Anyone with a thoracic aortic aneurysm or dissection at a young age.
- Anyone with a family history of aortic dissection or rupture.
- Anyone with clinical features or a clinical diagnosis of a connective tissue disorder, such as Marfan syndrome, Loeys-Dietz syndrome or Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.
- Anyone with a close family member who has a mutation in a gene related to aneurysms/dissections/ connective tissue disorders.
Connective tissues support different parts of your body. Connective tissue disorders often involve the joints, muscles and skin, but in some cases may affect other parts of the body including the heart and blood vessels.