Cross-sectional echocardiographic detection of aortic obstruction. 2. Coarctation of the Aorta.
Cross-sectional echocardiographic studies of the aortic arch and proximal descending aorta were performed in 18 patients with coarctation of the aorta and 20 normal subjects. In normals the aortic arch and proximal descending aorta appeared as an arcuate, echo-free structure curving across the plane of the scan. There were no localized changes in aortic diameter and the amplitude of aortic systolic pulsation was symmetrically maintained throughout the scan plane. Visualization of this region was possible in 16 of 18 patients with coarctation. In each of these cases there was a localized area of decrease in aortic diameter in the region of the left subclavian artery which corresponded to the angiographic appearance of the coarctation. In addition prominent systolic pulsation of the aortic arch proximal to the region of obstruction was evident. Cross-sectional echocardiography may offer a useful noninvasive method for direct visualization of aortic coarctation.
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