Search our website Find job opportunies at THI and St. Luke's Find a doctor location and contact information
Heart Information Center
Ask a Heart Doctor
  Back to previous page


Help us improve this service.

Your feedback will help guide us in developing this site.

Ask a Texas Heart Institute Doctor 
Informed patients make better patients.


What are my treatment options for a dilated aortic root? 

For the last two months I have experienced pain in the center of my chest, and some backache which I don't think is related. Prior to this: on July 8th 2008, I was diagnosed with having a dilated aortic root at 5cm.  After further testing on July 10th 2008, this diagnosis was confirmed as an ectatic aortic root in the ascending aorta. No evidence of an aneurysm. Ectasia of ascending aorta with widest diameter at level of right pulmonary artery, measuring 4.1 cm and aortic root is dilated, measuring 4.6cm. Descending thoracic aorta and pulmonary artery has normal caliber. Pericardial effusion. Tiny coronary artery calcification was identified. Severe left ventricular hypertrophy in a concentric pattern with LV thickness measured 1.5 x 1.5 and the left ventricle is not enlarged end diastole. There is normal wall motion of 55% and normal diastolic function. My HDL cholesterol was considered a bit on the low side.

My question is: What are my treatment options and what kind of specialist should I be seeing? Is there any hope for me or should I just enjoy the days I do have and let nature take its course?  Thanks. 

submitted by Michael from Washington, DC on 3/14/2011


by Texas Heart Institute cardiovascular surgeon, Denton A. Cooley, MD  

Denton A. Cooley, MDWe have no record of your age, blood pressure or other essentials.  In general, a dilated ascending aorta measuring 5cm diameter is indication for replacement with a fabric graft.  Your physician should control your blood pressure if it is elevated, and he/she should be informed of any new symptoms you may experience such as chest pain.  A cardiologist is an appropriate specialist for your condition, and this person can enlist a cardiovascular surgeon when needed.     

See also on this site:     

Has your question or a similar one already been answered?
Search all the Heart Doctor questions and answers.

To search for a doctor or access St. Luke's physician referral service, use the "Find a Doctor" link at the top of this page.

Updated March 2011
Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Subscribe to us on YouTube Find Us on Flicikr Follow Us on Pinterest Add us on Google+ Find us on LinkedIn 

Please contact our Webmaster with questions or comments.
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
© Copyright Texas Heart Institute
All rights reserved.