Patients with Aortic Disease Require Lifelong Care

Surgery can avert catastrophic death, but the disease process marches on.

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Aortic disease kills more than 40,000 people a year in the U.S. alone, yet is relatively unknown. The disease causes the walls of the aorta, the largest blood vessel in the body, to weaken and balloon out, creating an aortic aneurysm. When the aneurysm reaches its limit, the inner layers of tissue simply rip apart (dissect). Most people do not survive an acute aortic dissection Those who make it to a hospital often require an emergency intervention.
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