A thoracic aortic aneurysm repair is a surgery to fix a problem in the aorta. The aorta is the largest blood vessel in the body. It starts at the heart and passes down through the chest and abdomen. The thoracic aorta is the part of the aorta in the chest. The aorta carries blood from the heart to blood vessels that supply the lower body.
is a weakened area of the blood vessel wall. If the aneurysm is large or continues to grow it can break open. In large blood vessels, this can lead to severe bleeding. A break in this blood vessel is often fatal.
Surgery may be done if there is a thoracic aortic aneurysm that is large or increasing in size.
This may be done as an open surgery or using an endovascular approach through one of your arteries.
For the endovascular repair, a small incision will be made in your leg. A small tube will be inserted in this incision and into the aorta. It will be moved up to the aneurysm. The tube will take pressure off the wall and prevent it from expanding or leaking. If you need additional heart surgery, it may be done at this time. The incision will then be closed.
In some cases, open surgery may be needed. An incision will be made in the chest. The ribs will be spread. The weakened area of the aorta will be replaced with a graft. The graft will be sewn into place. Blood will be able to flow through the graft. If you need additional heart surgery, it may be done at this time. The chest incision will then be closed with stitches or staples.