Thoracic Endovascular Aneurysm Repair | Oregon City Vascular
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Treatment / Thoracic Endovascular Aneurysm Repair (TEVAR)

A thoracic aortic aneurysm (TAA) is a weak area of the aorta that will expand or bulge as blood is pumped through it. As the TAA grows, the wall of the aorta becomes weak and can rupture. If your doctor thinks there is a risk that the TAA may rupture, treatment may be recommended

Am I a Candidate for Endovascular Repair of a Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm?

When you come in to be treated for a thoracic aneurysm, your doctor will talk with you about your medical history and perform diagnostic testing, which will include imaging. Once it is determined that you are a good candidate for Thoracic Endovascular Aortic Repair (TEVAR), the next step would be to schedule treatment. Candidates for TEVAR may present with the following:

  • Aneurysm – a weakening of the wall or ballooning out of the aorta
  • Dissection – separation of one of the aorta’s three layers
  • Stenosis – narrowing of the inside of the aorta
  • Transection – damage to the aorta from trauma or a car accident

TEVAR is a safe procedure and depending on the type of disease, usually provides a cure.

What to Expect from the Procedure

When you come in for your TEVAR procedure, you will either have local anesthesia with sedation, or general anesthesia – whatever you and your interventional radiologist (IR) have discussed. Your IR will gain access to the blood vessel through a small puncture in the groin. A small plastic tube (catheter) is placed into the aorta and dye is injected to provide a roadmap of the blood vessels.

The diseased areas of the aorta is marked and measured for placement of a device called a stent graft. The stent graft is made of a fabric-covered metal mesh which is fully opened under x-ray guidance. The stent graft will repair the diseased aorta and help to keep it open, allowing blood to flow properly to the rest of the body. The puncture site in the groin will then be closed with a plug.

Recovery

Endovascular repair of thoracic aneurysms is generally less painful and has a lower risk of complications than traditional surgery because the incisions are smaller. Endovascular aorta aneurysm procedures will also allow you to leave the hospital soon and recovery more quickly.

Although thoracic endovascular aortic repair is a relatively safe procedure, there are still potential risks. Some possible complications are:

  • Blood leakages around the stent graft
  • Blockages of the flow of blood though the stent graft
  • Movement of the stent graft from it’s original location
  • Fracture of the stent graft
  • Infection
  • Rupture of the aneurysm or aorta

Follow-up imaging tests will take place at specific time points following the procedure to make certain the graft is still functioning. If your aneurysm is shrinking and no problems are found, subsequent imaging tests will take place annually.

Whether or not you are a candidate for TEVAR will depend on your diagnosis and consultation with your interventional radiologist. But if you have been diagnosed with a thoracic aortic aneurysm and are looking for a safe, effective, minimally invasive treatment option, thoracic endovascular aortic repair may be the answer. Call IVC today at 503-612-0498 to schedule an appointment for a consultation.

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