Atherosclerosis( sclerosis) of the aorta: symptoms, causes, treatment

Atherosclerosis of the aorta of the heart

Atherosclerosis or aortic heart sclerosis is a pathological condition characterized by the deposition of fat, cholesterol and other substances on the walls of the largest artery in the body( aorta), as a result of which it solidifies, and the normal blood supply to the heart and brain is disrupted.

"Atherosclerosis" comes from two Greek words: ἀθήρα ( Athera) - "gruel" and σκληρός - "hard".

Specifically, such a diagnosis is rarely made, they usually just talk about atherosclerosis. It implies a blockage of various arteries, among which the aorta is simply the largest and most basic. Also more often physicians talk about atherocalcinosis( the final stage of atherosclerosis of the aorta) or Lerish syndrome( lesion of the abdominal aorta and some other vessels).

When stating this diagnosis, it can be implied that it means the blockage and hardening of the coronary arteries - the two main vessels that feed the heart. But they are not aorta( the main artery), although they depart from its root.

Therefore, later in the article it will be just about atherosclerosis of the aorta.


  • 1 Causes of development
    • 1 Clinical picture
    • 3 Diagnosis
    • 4 Complications
    • 5 Treatment
    • 6 Prevention

Causes of development of

The exact cause of atherosclerosis of the cardiac aorta is not known, but this is preceded by a number of unfavorable external and internal factors:

  • excess weight;
  • hereditary predisposition;
  • bad habits, in particular smoking and alcoholism;
  • age( in persons after 45 years the chances of developing atherosclerosis are significantly higher than in young people);
  • diabetes mellitus;
  • elevated blood pressure, established hypertension;
  • is a sedentary lifestyle.

In order to understand what an atherosclerosis of the cardiac aorta is, you should go a little deeper into the anatomy. The aorta is the largest blood vessel in the human body, from which many small vessels and branches leave. Most often, atherosclerotic deposits do not appear on the inner surface of the aorta, but only in certain areas of it, which causes the clinical symptoms of the disease.

Clinical picture

Atherosclerosis most often affects the thoracic or abdominal part of the aorta, depending on what the clinical manifestations will be different. When the thoracic part of the aorta is affected, the following symptoms are observed in the patient:

  • syncope;
  • violation of the act of swallowing, sensation of a lump in the throat;
  • violation of voice, hoarseness, hoarseness;
  • cramps in the neck;
  • weakness and patient fatigue;
  • increase in systolic( upper) pressure, with diastolic parameters not exceeding the allowable norm;
  • pain syndrome in the heart area with irradiation under the shoulder blades, neck, limbs, ribs, spinal column.

The defeat of the abdominal part of the aorta by atherosclerosis is most often a latent period of time, that is, there are no characteristic clinical symptoms of the disease. The patient can note the appearance of the following signs, which usually does not connect with atherosclerosis:

  • rapid weight loss;
  • stool change;
  • bloating and increased gas formation;
  • nausea;
  • paroxysmal pains around the umbilical ring, occurring more often after ingestion;
  • pain in the stomach.
Hardening of the arteries does not cause symptoms until the blood flow to the organs becomes slow or blocked.


In the early stages of development of atherosclerosis, blood tests for determining the level of cholesterol in the blood will help diagnose. If the indicators significantly exceed the norm, the patient is referred for a detailed examination including ECG, EchoEG, computed tomography and MRI.Modern apparatus and the latest diagnostic techniques allow to accurately detect the lesion of the aorta with atherosclerosis.

Complications of

In the absence of timely diagnosis and treatment of disorders, atherosclerosis progresses and affects many areas of the vessel, leading to a number of complications that threaten the health and life of the patient:

  • ischemic stroke;
  • myocardial infarction;
  • blockage of blood clots in blood vessels of the lower limbs, resulting in the patient may form gangrene, threatening amputation;
  • cardiac arrhythmia;
  • acute and chronic heart failure;
  • angina pectoris.

Treatment of

The sooner a pathology is revealed, the more chances for successful treatment. Atherosclerosis, diagnosed in a timely manner, is well treatable by conservative methods. The doctor individually selects for each patient a drug that reduces the level of fat in the body, which should be taken for a long time, perhaps even for several years. Each month the patient should undergo a test and take blood tests to determine the level of cholesterol, so that you can monitor the condition and prevent progression of atherosclerosis in time.

At the stage of the patient's examination it is important to establish the risk factors provoking the development of atherosclerosis and, if possible, to eliminate or reduce the negative impact of these pathologies on the patient's body. Under strict control it is necessary to keep diabetes and arterial hypertension, as these diseases lead to the progression of atherosclerosis and the development of concomitant complications.

An important component of the successful treatment of atherosclerosis of the heart aorta is a diet, the diet excludes:

  • strong meat, mushroom and fish broth;
  • sausages;
  • smoked meat;
  • pork, lard;
  • by-products;
  • spices and spices;
  • alcohol;
  • chocolate.

Sharply limit or temporarily exclude butter and egg yolk, since these foods are rich in cholesterol. Dishes are best cooked by steaming or by extinguishing, the diet should contain a lot of fresh vegetables and fruits, herbs, dried fruits, sour-milk products.

In advanced cases, when a patient is at risk of life, surgery is performed on the affected area of ​​the aorta, where the prosthesis is inserted to restore normal blood flow.

Prevention of

Each person( especially at risk) is able to prevent the development of atherosclerosis of the aorta, for this, the following recommendations should be adhered to:

  • to lead an active lifestyle, perform non-complex physical exercises;
  • monitor body mass index;
  • is properly and nutritionally balanced;
  • rejection of bad habits;
  • in time to treat or prevent exacerbations of diseases that can lead to the formation of atherosclerotic plaques( diabetes mellitus, hypertension).

Persons with hereditary predisposition, as well as people over 50 years of age, should undergo regular medical examinations and take a blood test to determine the level of cholesterol.