A Case of Ruptured Penetrating Atherosclerotic Ulcer of the Thoracic Descending Aorta That Previously Had Asymptomatic Focal Ulceration

(Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Hiroshima City Asa Hospital, Hiroshima, Japan)

We encountered a case of ruptured penetrating atherosclerotic ulcer (PAU) that previously had focal ulceration. A 82-year-old man was followed on a diagnosis of distal arch true aneurysm with a diameter of 4.5cm on CT examination. He was admitted with sudden onset of back pain, but he had experienced no previous symptom. CT scan showed a ruptured penetrating atherosclerotic ulcer, therefore we performed emergency replacement of the thoracic descending aorta. The postoperative course was good. CT scan showed the thoracic descending aorta had focal ulceration with a width of 11mm and depth of 7mm at 6months, however the width was 11mm and the depth was 11mm 1month before rupture of the PAU. This suggested progression of the focal ulceration caused the PAU rupture.
@Jpn. J. Cardiovasc. Surg. 34: 307-309 (2005)