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Aortic dissection can occur as a result of

  • a tear in the intima and subsequent propagation of blood in the media - more common
  • intramural haemorrhage and haematoma formation in the media followed by perforation of the intima (1)

Aortic dissections are seen

  • along the greater curvature of the aorta (usually within 10 cm of the aortic valve) - in majority of dissections
  • in the descending thoracic aorta immediately distal to the origin of the left subclavian artery - the next most commonest site (1)

Presence of an intimal flap is the characteristic of aortic dissection (1).


Last reviewed 01/2018