Are there different types of aortic dissections?

The two major types of aortic dissection, type A and type B, are defined by the location of the tear.

Type A dissection is when the tear begins in the ascending aorta and progresses throughout the vessel, often extending as far as the arteries in the leg.

Type B dissection is when the tear is located only in the descending aorta, but may extend into the abdomen. The distinction between the two types is important, as it guides the management of the disease. Type A requires immediate surgery, to prevent death from stroke, heart attack, congestive heart failure, or bleeding. Type B dissection is considered a medical condition that can be initially treated with aggressive control of blood pressure. Additional treatments are generally reserved for complications resulting from the tear.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.