If you have recently been diagnosed with a tortuous aorta, you are probably wondering what is a tortuous aorta? The aorta is the largest artery in the body, supplying the body with its oxygenated blood supply from the heart. The aorta has four divisions, which begin at the left ventricle of the heart and continue on throughout the upper body, supplying the coronary arteries, brain, neck, arms, chest and abdomen with an adequate blood supply.
A tortuous refers to when an area becomes anatomically blocked because of an obstruction in the area. This is often caused by a distorted shape, causing the pathway to kink, twist and even deteriorate. When a tortuous aorta occurs, the aorta develops a blockage, making it difficult to supply the body with the blood it needs to function properly. When the aorta becomes distorted from its natural shape, the oxygenated blood needed to allow the body to function becomes limited. As a result, serious medical complications can arise, including loss of circulation and high blood pressure.
High blood pressure is seen in almost all individuals who have a tortuous aorta due to the interruption of blood flow. The condition can worsen and atherosclerosis can occur. This occurs when plaque lines the inside of blood vessels, causing the blood flow through the vessels to become even more limited. In severe cases of a tortuous aorta, the esophagus can be altered. As the aorta twists or becomes deformed, it can put pressure on the esophagus, resulting in pain as the esophagus is moved out of its natural position.
It is essential proper treatment is sought for a tortuous aorta. A tortuous aorta can easily be diagnosed using imaging technology from a medical professional.