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J Vasc Interv Radiol. 2011 Jul;22(7):980-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jvir.2011.01.434. Epub 2011 Apr 3.

Development of in vivo quantitative geometric mapping of the aortic arch for advanced endovascular aortic repair: feasibility and preliminary results.

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Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, University Hospital Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 110, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.



To evaluate whether quantitative characterization of aortic arch geometry including its branches is feasible based on in vivo computed tomography (CT) angiography and magnetic resonance (MR) angiography data in healthy and diseased aortic arches.


Ten healthy volunteers, 10 patients with abdominal aortic disease, and 10 patients with aortic arch disease underwent MR angiography (10 volunteers) or CT angiography (20 patients). Commercial software was used for individual segmentation of supraaortic arteries. In-house software was developed for segmentation of aortic arch landmarks based on standardized multiplanar reformations (MPRs) and for subsequent aortic arch mapping.


Supraaortic arteries and aortic arch landmarks were successfully segmented in all 30 subjects for CT angiography and MR angiography data. Significant tapering within the first centimeter was observed in all supraaortic arteries (P < .001). The three supraaortic arteries showed significantly different vessel diameters and areas (P < .001). The software developed in-house allowed detailed aortic arch mapping with quantitative definitions of the positional relationships between each supraaortic artery and the aorta. Distances between supraaortic arteries were less than 5 mm in 77.6% (mean 4.1 mm ± 3.8). The brachiocephalic trunk tended to be positioned on the right side of the aortic arch, and the left subclavian and left common carotid arteries tended to be positioned on the left side of the aortic arch.


The feasibility and application of a postprocessing method allowing quantification of geometry of supraaortic arteries and aortic arch mapping were successfully demonstrated. Validation and evaluation of clinical implications are warranted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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