Q:

What causes an aortic tear?

A:

Quick Answer

The causes of aortic tear include high blood pressure and other conditions that weaken the aortic wall, including inherited conditions such as Marfan syndrome and injuries to the chest, according to Healthline. Other causes include pregnancy and surgical complications, as MedicineNet reports.

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Full Answer

The exact cause of aortic tears remains unknown, but elements that strain the walls of the arteries contribute significantly to the damage, as Healthline explains. High blood pressure is a leading contributing factor of aortic tears.

Hypertension causes changes in heartbeat that limit the ability of the aorta to withstand pressure changes, as MedicineNet describes. Over time, this weakens an area of the intima.

There are other conditions that contribute to an aortic tear by weakening the aortic wall, according to Healthline. Such conditions result in abnormal tissue development, including Marfan syndrome or bicuspid aortic valve, as Mayo Clinic reports. Other rare causes include Turner syndrome, syphilis and cocaine use, as MedicineNet details.

Pregnancy is a rare cause of aortic tears that is more prevalent during the third trimester, as MedicineNet reveals. Other women may experience the tear during the early postpartum period.

Aortic tears can result as complications resulting from medical operations, according to MedicineNet. Such operations include mitral valve repairs, aortic repairs and bypass grafting.

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