Conditions We Treat: Aortic Dissection

The wall of the aorta is made of three flexible layers to handle the constant volume of blood sent through it from the heart. An aortic dissection occurs when the inner wall tears, allowing blood to enter the space between layers. Aortic dissection, particularly when close to the heart, can be immediately life-threatening. If you or someone you know suspect an aortic dissection immediately call 9-1-1. 

Aortic Dissection | Rodney's Story

Rodney M. was airlifted to Johns Hopkins after experiencing sudden chest discomfort, leg numbness and excruciating pain. The culprit of his symptoms was a life-threatening tear in his aorta, the vessel that supplies blood from the heart to the rest of the body. Rodney promptly underwent a highly complex emergency surgery during which Dr. Jennifer Lawton repaired his aorta and set him on the road to recovery.

Why choose Johns Hopkins for treatment of aortic dissection?

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  • Johns Hopkins vascular surgeons are pioneers in minimally invasive aortic aneurysm and dissection surgery using the fenestrated abdominal aortic aneurysm graft.
  • Supporting your surgical care is a team of specially trained nurses and therapists supporting your care and recovery.
  • Johns Hopkins surgeons have set the standard for aortic dissection repair for over 50 years.  
  • Our team of highly trained experts carries the experience to safely address aortic dissection and aneurysm disease in all its forms and challenges. 
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Our Specialty Centers

The Dana & Albert "Cubby" Broccoli Center for Aortic Diseases is one of the few centers in the world specializing in conditions of the aorta.