Non-surgical treatment options for thoracic aortic aneurysms
Controlling or modifying risk factors: Steps such as quitting smoking, controlling blood sugar if diabetic, losing weight if overweight or obese, and controlling dietary fat intake may help to control the progression of the aneurysm
Medication: To control factors such as hyperlipidemia (elevated levels of fats in the blood) and/or high blood pressure
Stanford has an international reputation for the treatment of patients suffering from thoracic aortic diseases and has made numerous significant contributions in this area, including:
The advent of hypothermic circulatory arrest for aortic arch and other aortic procedures
Surgical treatment (and classification) of acute and chronic aortic dissections
A multidisciplinary approach for treatment of Marfan syndrome and associated connective tissue disorders.
Interventional catheter-based treatment of complications of aortic dissection
Percutaneous endovascular stent graft repair of descending thoracic aortic aneurysms: A method of reinforcing an aneurysm in the aorta using a stent, which is a tube made of metal mesh or coil. The stent helps prevent the aneurysm from bursting.
Asymptomatic aneurysms may not require surgical intervention until they reach a certain size or are noted to be increasing in size over a certain period of time. Parameters considered when making surgical decisions include:
Aneurysm size greater than 5.5 to 6 centimeters (greater than two inches)
Aneurysm growth rate 0.5 centimeters (slightly less than one-fourth inch) over a period of six months to one year
Presence of genetic disorders or familial history of thoracic aneurysms
Patient's ability to tolerate the procedure
For symptomatic aneurysms, immediate intervention is indicated
Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.
Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.