Ascending thoracic aorta: postoperative imaging evaluation.
Advances in computed tomography (CT) scanners and electrocardiographic gating techniques have resulted in superior image quality of the ascending aorta and increased the use of CT angiography for evaluating the postoperative ascending aorta. Several abnormalities of the ascending aorta and aortic arch often require surgery, and various open techniques may be used to reconstruct the aorta, such as the Wheat procedure, in which both an ascending aortic graft and an aortic valve prosthesis are implanted; the Cabrol and modified Bentall procedures, in which a composite synthetic ascending aorta and aortic valve graft are placed; the Ross procedure, in which the aortic valve and aortic root are replaced with the patient's native pulmonary valve and proximal pulmonary artery; valve-sparing procedures such as the T. David-V technique, which leaves the native aortic valve intact; and more extensive arch repair procedures such as the elephant trunk and arch-first techniques, in which interposition or inclusion grafts are implanted, with or without replacement of the aortic valve. Normal postoperative imaging findings, such as hyperattenuating felt pledgets, prosthetic conduits, and reanastomosis sites, may mimic pathologic processes. Postoperative complications seen at CT angiography that require further intervention include pseudoaneurysms, anastomotic stenoses, dissections, and aneurysms. Radiologists must be familiar with these procedures and their imaging features to identify normal postoperative appearances and complications.
Prescott-Focht, JA; Martinez-Jimenez, S; Hurwitz, LM; Hoang, JK; Christensen, JD; Ghoshhajra, BB; Abbara, S
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