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Aortic aneurysm and dissection

An aortic aneurysm is a bulge or ballooning in the wall of the aorta, the main artery that supplies blood flow from the heart to the rest of the body. An aneurysm is caused by a weakness in the artery wall. As an aneurysm expands, the wall of the aorta grows thinner and can widen or tear (dissect), causing life-threatening events. Aortic aneurysms are often related to genetic and connective tissue conditions like Marfan syndrome.

Prevention and treatment for children and adults

Children’s Hospital physicians are some of the most experienced in the nation when it comes to treating children and adults born with heart defects that can lead to aortic aneurysm or dissection, including Marfan syndrome. Dedicated monitoring of each patient’s condition helps prevent an aneurysm from developing and can prompt timely medical or surgical treatment if an aneurysm does occur. Learn more about our Marfan Syndrome Program.

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Nationally recognized


Ranked #5 in the nation

U.S. News & World Report has once again ranked the Herma Heart Institute at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin among the top ten in the nation for pediatric cardiology and heart surgery. This ranking reflects the excellent outcomes and care we provide for even the most complex heart conditions. Families travel from across the country, and even around the world, to receive care from our specialists who are experienced in treating congenital heart disease from before birth and into adulthood.