Concept

Syphilitic aortitis

Résumé
Syphilitic aortitis is inflammation of the aorta associated with the tertiary stage of syphilis infection. SA begins as inflammation of the outermost layer of the blood vessel, including the blood vessels that supply the aorta itself with blood, the vasa vasorum. As SA worsens, the vasa vasorum undergo hyperplastic thickening of their walls thereby restricting blood flow and causing ischemia of the outer two-thirds of the aortic wall. Starved for oxygen and nutrients, elastic fibers become patchy and smooth muscle cells die. If the disease progresses, syphilitic aortitis leads to an aortic aneurysm. Overall, tertiary syphilis is a rare cause of aortic aneurysms. Syphilitic aortitis has become rare in the developed world with the advent of penicillin treatments after World War II. Signs and symptoms The infection often has no symptoms until the patient develops an aneurysm because of the aortic dilatation. The disease is often discovered after a routine
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