Value of transesophageal echocardiography combined with computed tomography for assessing repaired type A aortic dissection

R P Roudaut, X L Marcaggi, C Deville, G de Verbizier, P Dos Santos, F Fontan, M Dallocchio
American Journal of Cardiology 1992 December 1, 70 (18): 1468-76
Thirty-two patients with repaired type A aortic dissection were examined by transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) (n = 32), transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) (n = 30), computed tomography (CT) (n = 29), or a combination of all 3, to assess course and complications as a function of the surgical procedure. The mean follow-up period was 55.7 months (range 3 to 132). Surgery consisted of a replacement of the ascending aorta in 25 patients (group 1) with extension to the transverse aorta in 7 (group 2). The transverse diameter of the aorta, the persistence of the false lumen, thrombus formation and flow dynamics in the false lumen were evaluated by TEE. Ten patients (31%) had a dilation in the initial ascending aorta (sinus of Valsalva aneurysm in 6 patients, and a false aneurysm in the other 4). Three of 4 patients with a proximal pseudoaneurysm underwent operation after TEE and CT evaluation. In the descending thoracic aorta, there was good agreement between TEE and CT scan determinations of transverse vessel diameter. Persistence of flow within the false lumen was significantly more frequent in patients with a dilated aorta (p < 0.05), whereas thrombosis was seen more often and false lumen less often in patients with nondilated aorta. No significant differences in vessel status or outcome were observed between the 2 groups, although this may have been due to the small size of group 2. TEE is thus a well-tolerated method for postoperative follow-up of type A aortic dissection whatever the type of surgery. For the upper ascending aorta, CT provided sufficient data.


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