Doppler sonograpy with dynamic testing in a case of aortic dissection extending to the innominate and right common carotid arteries

P BonninB I Levy


A 50-year-old woman with Marfan's syndrome was admitted for an aortic dissection with an intimal flap extending from the sinus of Valsalva to the descending aorta and aortic valve incompetence. Ultrasonography revealed a double lumen in the innominate and right common carotid (RCCA) arteries. The false lumen extended from the aortic arch to the distal RCCA and compressed and nearly occluded the true lumen in the innominate artery. At the end of the RCCA was a large tear allowing communication between the false and true lumens. Colour-coded Doppler sonography showed blood passing from the false lumen into the true lumen and antegrade flow in the false lumen but reverse flow in the true channel. A dynamic test, as used in accessing for subclavian steal syndrome, producing reactive hyperaemia, showed the retrograde flow in the true channel to be markedly increased, supplying the subclavian artery. We emphasie the importance of functional description of an abnormal haemodynamic situation, which in this case helped to avoid unnecessary surgery to the supra-aortic arteries.


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