The Value of Imaging Thoracic Aortic Calcifications
The imaging evaluation of thoracic aortic calcifications can provide insights regarding prognosis, diagnosis, and management. Specifically, when an echocardiogram or coronary artery calcium study is performed, the presence of thoracic aortic calcification combined with other noncoronary sites of calcification has ancillary prognostic information. In a patient with an unknown cause for stroke, the extent and mobility of thoracic aortic atheroma may establish a source for embolus. For a patient considering a cardiovascular intervention, the presence of a porcelain aorta may alter the procedural approach.