Your aorta, the largest artery in your body, carries blood from your heart to the rest of your body. Certain conditions can weaken your aorta and become life-threatening.
At the Allegheny Health Network (AHN) Cardiovascular Institute, our aortic disease specialists use the most advanced diagnostic imaging technology and minimally invasive treatments to save lives.
Aortic disease care at Allegheny Health Network: why choose us?
Our physicians are experts at caring for patients with aortic diseases and other conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels. At the Cardiovascular Institute, you can expect:
- Advanced treatments for complex cases: We expertly use minimally invasive heart surgery techniques for patients who have health complications that make conventional open-heart surgery too risky.
- Comprehensive program: We’re leaders in offering cutting-edge surgical techniques, heart devices, and other therapies. Via the Cardiovascular Research Institute, you have access to new treatments still in the clinical trial phase.
- Dedicated team approach: You receive innovative, coordinated care from a team of heart specialists from different areas of expertise. Our experts work together to develop a personalized, streamlined treatment plan that avoids duplicate tests, saving you time and costs.
- Leading cardiac care: AHN is the highest-rated health system in western Pennsylvania for patient safety in overall medical care, overall surgical care, heart attack treatment, heart failure treatment, and pulmonary care, according to the 2018 CareChex® quality rating system.*
Types of aortic disease
We’re experts at treating all types of aortic conditions including:
- Aneurysms: A weakening of the aortic wall can allow blood to pool and cause a bulge (aneurysm). A ruptured aneurysm can be fatal.
- Abdominal aortic aneurysms develop in the lower part of your aortic artery in the abdomen.
- Thoracic aneurysms form in the upper part of the aortic artery in your chest.
- Dissections: This life-threatening condition occurs when the inner layer of the aorta tears, allowing blood to flow through.
Treating aortic disease at AHN
Our experts collaborate to develop a treatment plan specific to your unique condition and circumstances. When appropriate, we use minimally invasive techniques to provide you with a faster, less painful recovery.
Treatment options for aneurysms and dissections include:
- Endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR): During a minimally invasive catheter-based procedure, your physician places a mesh tube called a stent-graft at the site of the aneurysm or tear. The stent-graph reinforces the aortic wall while diverting blood flow away from the aneurysm or dissection. You undergo a thoracic EVAR (TEVAR) for thoracic aneurysm.
- Open repair: During this open-heart procedure, your physician accesses the aneurysm or tear via a long incision in the abdomen. Your physician then sews the stent-graft into place.
*Number one in market claims are based on CareChex® 2018 Composite Quality Scores and Ratings™ for acute care hospitals serving the combined statistical area (CSA) of Pittsburgh-New Castle-Weirton. Source: 2018 CareChex, an information service of Quantros, Inc. January 2014 – June 2016