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Heart Disease Health Center

Medical Reference Related to Heart Disease

  1. Temporal Artery Biopsy - Topic Overview

    If you have symptoms of giant cell arteritis (GCA) and your doctor believes you may have it,he or she may order a temporal artery biopsy to make sure. Giant cell arteritis can occur at various points along an artery. To test for giant cell arteritis,your doctor may have a surgeon take a sample of a blood vessel on your temple and test it for inflammation. If a temporal artery biopsy shows no ...

  2. Aortic Aneurysm - Health Tools

    Health Tools help you make wise health decisions or take action to improve your health. Decision Points focus on key medical care decisions that are important to many health problems. Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm: Should I Get a Screening Test? ...

  3. Aortic Aneurysm - Exams and Tests

    Aortic aneurysms are often discovered during an X - ray, ultrasound, or echocardiogram done for other reasons. Occasionally, an abdominal aneurysm is felt during a routine physical examination. If this is the case, your doctor will perform a medical history and physical examination.Once an aneurysm is suspected or diagnosed, it is important to:Pinpoint the location of the aneurysm.Estimate its ...

  4. Aortic Dissection - Topic Overview

    What is an aortic dissection? Aortic dissection occurs when a small tear develops in the wall of the aorta. The tear forms a new channel between the inner and outer layers of the aortic wall. This causes bleeding into the channel and can enlarge the tear. Aortic dissection is a life-threatening condition. Aortic dissection can be caused by atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and high ...

  5. Aortic Aneurysm - Frequently Asked Questions

    Learning about aortic aneurysms:What is an aortic aneurysm?What causes an aortic aneurysm?What are the symptoms of an aortic aneurysm?What happens in aortic aneurysm?What increases my risk for an aortic aneurysm?What else could be causing my symptoms?Who is affected by abdominal aortic aneurysm?Being diagnosed:How is aortic aneurysm diagnosed?Getting treatment:How is an aortic aneurysm ...

  6. Aortic Aneurysm - Ongoing Concerns

    Aortic aneurysms are hard to detect, as they often do not cause symptoms. Most people with aortic aneurysms are unaware they have them, and they are often diagnosed during an evaluation for another problem. If you are diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm, you need to monitor its size and rate of growth. Set up regular exams with your health professional. This is especially important because ...

  7. Aortic Aneurysm - Cause

    Abdominal and thoracicaortic aneurysms are caused by a number of factors, including:Hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Exactly how atherosclerosis leads to abdominal aortic aneurysms is unclear. It is thought that atherosclerosis causes changes in the lining of the artery wall that may affect oxygen and nutrient flow to the aortic wall tissues. The resulting tissue damage and breakdown .

  8. Aortic Aneurysm - When to Call a Doctor

    Call or other emergency services immediately if you have signs of a ruptured aortic aneurysm such as:Sudden, severe pain. An extreme drop in blood pressure. Signs of shock. If you witness a person become unconscious, call or other emergency services and start cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The emergency operator can coach you on how to perform CPR. For more information about CPR, see the ...

  9. Open Repair Surgery for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

    Open surgery is done to repair an abdominal aortic aneurysm. It is called an open surgery because the abdomen is opened so the doctor can see and work on the aorta. Open surgery is the traditional method of repair.To repair the aneurysm, a doctor uses a man-made tube (called a graft) to replace the weak and bulging section of the aorta in the belly. General anesthesia is used for this surgery. The doctor makes a large cut (incision) in the belly or the side of the abdomen. The doctor puts clamps on the aorta above and below the aneurysm. This stops blood flow through the area that the doctor is working on. The doctor removes the aneurysm and attaches the graft to the aorta. For some aneurysms, the doctor leaves the aneurysm wall intact, and the graft is placed inside the aneurysm.After the aorta is repaired, the doctor removes the clamps so that blood can flow through the aorta again. Then the doctor uses stitches or staples to close the incision in the belly.

  10. Angiogram

    An angiogram is an X-ray test that uses fluoroscopy to take pictures of the blood flow within an artery (such as the aorta) or a vein (such as the vena cava).

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