How are ascending aortic aneurysms treated?
Treatment for an ATAA depends on its size, rate of growth and underlying cause. Aneurysms that are smaller than 5.5 centimeters don’t usually need surgery right away unless you have additional risk factors (such as family history, connective tissue disorder and bicuspid aortic valve). Your healthcare provider may recommend:
- Medications to manage your blood pressure and reduce force against the artery wall.
- Imaging exams about every six months to monitor the size of the aneurysm. Then every few years if the aneurysm isn’t growing quickly.
- Lifestyle adjustments such as diet, exercise and not smoking. Talk to your healthcare provider about safe, low-impact physical activities that won’t put too much pressure on your arteries.
Aneurysms larger than 5.5 centimeters typically need surgery, but there are exceptions. For instance, people with Marfan syndrome, a bicuspid aortic valve or a family history of aneurysms may need surgery sooner. Studies suggest these conditions make it more likely an aneurysm will rupture at a smaller size. Your healthcare provider will make recommendations for surgery based on your individual needs.