My doctor told me I have an uncoiled aorta

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Submitted by Dr T on February 2, 2011 – 11:20am


I went for a chest Xray for a cough and it was normal but on the report it said uncoiling of the thoracic aorta???? I asked my Dr what it meant and he didn’t know..(LOL).. So does anyone know what causes this and is there a way to reverse it.. I do not have high blood pressure and also do not have anxiety. Thank you for the answers ahead of time.. I just want to make sure this isn’t anything serious.

Uncoiled Aorta (with apologies for poor drafting): The yellow line shows a normal curve of the aorta. The Blue line on the right shows a straighter, wider curve,”uncoiled”.

It is nothing serious by itself. “Uncoiled Aorta” reflects a change of the silhouette of the thoracic aorta as seen on the X ray. It usually refers to a mild enlargement and straightening of the thoracic aorta on the imaging test. It is an indication of normal aging, atherosclerosis and hypertension.

It is not a sign of anything serious unless there are other findings such as an aneurysm. I never understand why this type of “technical” information is passed on to patients. If it came up in one of mine, I would interpret it as confirmation of things I already knew such as atherosclerosis etc. and consider treatment of for instance the hypertension. As with any test, there is usually lots of unnecessary information that a physician must put into context before passing it on to his or her patient. This is one of those things.
Hope this helps,
Dr T

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