Infectious thoracic aortitis: a literature review

Clin Cardiol. 2009 Sep;32(9):488-90. doi: 10.1002/clc.20578.


Infectious thoracic aortitis (IA) remains a rare disease, especially after the appearance of antibiotics. However, if left untreated it is always lethal. It usually affects patients with atherosclerotic aortic disease and/or infective endocarditis. Mycotic aneurysm is the most common form of presentation, although a few reports of nonaneurysmal infectious thoracic aortitis have also been described. Various microorganisms have been associated with infectious thoracic aortitis, most commonly Staphylococcal, Enterococcus, Streptococcus, and Salmonella species. It is extremely important to establish an early diagnosis of IA, because this condition is potentially life-threatening. However, diagnosis is frequently delayed since clinical manifestations are usually nonspecific. Antibiotherapy in combination with complete surgical excision of the infected aorta is the best choice of treatment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aneurysm, Infected / diagnosis
  • Aneurysm, Infected / microbiology*
  • Aneurysm, Infected / therapy
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Aorta, Thoracic / microbiology*
  • Aorta, Thoracic / surgery
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic / diagnosis
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic / microbiology*
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic / therapy
  • Aortitis / diagnosis
  • Aortitis / microbiology*
  • Aortitis / therapy
  • Aortography / methods
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Echocardiography, Transesophageal
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vascular Surgical Procedures


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents