Skip to main content

A rare case of leaking thoracic aortic aneurysm in a patient with massive pulmonary embolism


The aim of this study was to report a rare case of a leaking thoracic aorta aneurysm in a female patient with massive pulmonary embolism. A 70-year-old woman with hypertension who had suffered a cerebral vascular accident 2 years ago presented with urinary tract infection, dehydration, and anemia. While in hospital, she was diagnosed with pulmonary embolism, and anticoagulation therapy was started using heparin. As the tachycardia persisted with a further drop in hemoglobin levels, and because a new left-sided pleural effusion was revealed on chest radiograph, a chest CT with a CT angiography was performed. It revealed a large leaking aneurysm of the descending thoracic aorta. This was treated by inserting an endovascular stent. This rare case shows the importance of investigating for other serious coexistent causes of tachycardia in patients with pulmonary embolism during treatment.


  1. Bickerstaff LK, Pairolero PC, Hollier LH, Melton LJ, Van Peenen HJ, Cherry KJ, et al. Thoracic aortic aneurysms: a population-based study. Surgery 1982; 92:1103–1108.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Dake MD, Miller DC, Semba CP, Mitchell RS, Walker PJ, Liddell RP. Transluminal placement of endovascular stent-grafts for the treatment of descending thoracic aortic aneurysms. N Engl J Med 1994; 331:1729–1734.

    CAS  Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  3. Dong HK, Sang WR, Yong SC, Byoung HA. Aortic dissection presenting with secondary pulmonary hypertension caused by compression of the pulmonary artery by dissecting haematoma: a case report. Korean J Radiol 2004; 5:139–142.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Eugenio N, Thomas T, Letizia C, Gianni C, Enrico T, Carlo S. Acute dissecting aneurysm of the ascending thoracic aorta causing obstruction and thrombosis of right pulmonary artery. Tex Heart inst J 2001; 28:149–151.

    Google Scholar 

  5. Nasrallah A, Goussous Y, El-Said G, Garcia E, Hall RJ. Pulmonary artery compression due to acute dissecting aortic aneurysm: clinical and angio-graphic diagnosis. Chest 1975; 67:228–230.

    CAS  Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  6. Dake MD, Kato N, Mitchell RS, Semba CP, Razavi MK, Shimono T, et al. Endovascular stent-graft placement for the treatment of acute aortic dissection. N Engl J Med 1999; 340:1546–1552.

    CAS  Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  7. Swensson LG, Crawford ES. Aortic dissection and aortic aneurysm surgery: clinical observations, experimental investigations, and statistical analysis. Part II. Curr Probl Surg 1992; 29:913–1057.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Shabib Al-Zuabi.

Rights and permissions

This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Al-Zuabi, S., Varkey, A.P., Abdalmaksoud, S.F. et al. A rare case of leaking thoracic aortic aneurysm in a patient with massive pulmonary embolism. Egypt J Intern Med 25, 47–50 (2013).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


  • anticoagulation
  • aortic aneurysm
  • leaking aneurysm
  • pulmonary embolism