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Aorta Disease and Marfan Syndrome
Monday, August 21, 2017 - 12 Noon (Eastern Time)

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Vidyasagar Kalahasti, MD

  • Director, Marfan Syndrome & Connective Tissue Disorder Clinic
  • Staff Cardiologist

Eric Roselli, MD

  • Director, Aorta Center
  • Staff Surgeon

At Cleveland Clinic’s Aorta Center, our mission is to bring together a knowledgeable and experienced multidisciplinary team of cardiology and vascular doctors and surgeons and other experts to provide a thorough evaluation of patients using state-of-the art diagnostic testing, ongoing comprehensive care of patients with disease of the aorta, connective tissue disorder and Marfan Syndrome, genetic screening for families of patients with genetic disorders, and ongoing research and education to provide patients with high quality and innovative therapies. Please join us to have your questions on Aorta Disease and Marfan Syndrome answered by Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Marfan Syndrome & Connective Tissue Disorder Clinic, Vidyasagar Kalahasti, MD, and Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Aorta Center, Eric Roselli, MD.

The aorta is the body’s main artery that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body. The section of the aorta that starts with the aortic valve in the heart and goes to the diaphragm is called the thoracic aorta. The part of the aorta that extends from the diaphragm through the abdomen is called the abdominal aorta.

The aorta can become damaged and weak, causing it to become wider (aneurysm) or torn (dissection). It can also, in rare cases, become blocked (stenosis or occlusion). These problems increase your risk of having a life-threatening event. Damage to your aorta can be caused by an injury or certain diseases and health conditions. These include:

• Atherosclerosis ("hardening of the arteries").
• Medial degeneration.
• Hypertension (high blood pressure).
• Genetic conditions (such as Marfan Syndrome).
• Other connective tissue disorders (such as Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Loeys-Dietz Syndrome, bicuspid aortic valve disease, osteogenesis imperfecta, polycystic kidney disease and Turner Syndrome) and inflammatory and autoimmune diseases (such as aortitis).

For patients with Marfan syndrome, the aorta can become damaged and weakened, causing it to become wider (aneurysm) or torn (dissection).

Connective tissue provides support to many structures within the body, such as the heart valves, blood vessels (the aorta), eyes, bones, nervous system and lungs. Because of this, patients with connective tissue disorders need a multidisciplinary approach to their care.

Vidyasagar Kalahasti, MD, is a staff cardiologist in the Section of Cardiovascular Imaging and the Robert and Suzanne Tomsich Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, at the Sydell and Arnold Miller Family Heart & Vascular Institute at Cleveland Clinic.

He is board-certified in internal medicine, Cardiovascular disease and National Board of Echocardiography. Dr. Kalahasti's specialty interests include aortic diseases (aortic aneurysm and aortic dissection), valvular heart disease, coronary artery disease and general cardiology.

A native of India, Dr. Kalahasti received his medical degree from the University of Health Sciences Sri Venkateswara Medical College in Tirupati, A.P., India, graduating with distinction. He did a rotating internship at S.V.R. R. Government General Hospital in Tirupati, A.P. India. He followed this with an internship and residency in internal medicine at Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Kalahasti then accepted a fellowship in cardiovascular disease from Cleveland Clinic. After that, he did advanced cardiac imaging fellowship in Echo and cardiovascular CT.

Eric Roselli, MD, is Chief of Adult Cardiac Surgery, Director of the Aorta Center and a Staff Surgeon in the Cleveland Clinic Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery and on the teaching faculty at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Thoracic Surgery.

Dr. Roselli’s specialty interests include Cardiac surgery, surgery for thoracic aortic aneurysm, endovascular aorta treatment - thoracic, surgery reoperation, heart valve surgery, high-risk reoperation surgery, minimally invasive cardiac surgery and percutaneous valve treatment.

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