For most of my adult life, I worried over the size of my left ventricle. There are many measures used to characterize this most important chamber of the heart and I have years of data and been tracking these various lengths, diameters and volumes. The image on the left is my ventricle just days before my surgery.
But leading up to my surgery, it wasn’t the left ventricle dimensions that were of most concern. The image on the right is a CT reconstruction of my ascending aorta a few months before my surgery. Another view of my aorta is shown in the echo cardiogram. Normal aortic root diameters for an adult male are are around 3.5cm, but in the echo image, you can see my measurements already larger than that. Yikes!
Concerns arising from an enlarged ascending aorta include dissection and the possibility of a fatal rupture. The American Heart Association Guidelines indicate surgery for aortic root measurements at 4.5cm, especially when combined with valve related issues. My cardiologist Dr Jeffery Westcott finally made the call and suggested it was time to replace my valve.