Intramural hematoma of the aorta: Diagnosis and treatment

Giuseppe Vaccari, Sabina Caciolli, Giancarlo Calamai, Manlio Acquafresca, Gianfranco Montesi, Lucio Braconi, Massimo Cassai, Avio Maria Perna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Increasing use of modern high-resolution imaging techniques yields to describe very early stages of aortic pathology which, if left untreated, may lead to overt aortic dissection. One typical example is aortic intramural hematoma (IMH) with a limited number of cases described in the literature and uncertainties still existing about the most appropriate treatment. Purpose of our study is to report our experience in the evaluation and treatment of IMHs. Methods: From 1991 to 1999 175 patients were conveyed to our centre for aortic dissection; in nine of them diagnosis of acute IMH was performed. Results: Diagnosis was obtained by means of conventional CT scan of the chest. All the patients underwent surgery, one patient died (11%). At the follow-up (mean 31 months) eight patients were alive and well and did not require any other cardiac surgery. Conclusions: The possibility to progress to overt aortic dissection may explain the need to an early diagnosis in the treatment of acute IMHs. Immediate surgical treatment is, in our experience, the preferred therapeutic option.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-173
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Acute aortic dissection
  • Intramural hematoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery


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