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The Massachusetts General Hospital Fireman Vascular Center is one of the only vascular centers in the country with specialists in every area of vascular disease. This multidisciplinary team of specialists has developed some of the most innovative therapies available for abdominal and thoracic aortic disease.
The Aortic Disease Program combines the expertise of a team of clinicians from multiple disciplines to provide advanced care from many perspectives, including:
We work together with the patient and referring physician to coordinate personalized treatment plans for all patients.
To accurately diagnose aortic disease, our team includes attending staff radiologists who are specially trained in the evaluation of the cardiovascular system and whose practice focuses specifically on vascular disease. These imaging specialists are board certified in general radiology and fellowship trained with additional specialization in cardiac and vascular procedures.
We may use one or more techniques to diagnose aortic disease, including:
These tests are also available at our convenient Waltham location
Specialists in the Fireman Vascular Center practice at Mass General and at our convenient location in Waltham. Mass General West offers outpatient services for people with vascular conditions, including imaging, consultation and coordinated care with multiple specialists. Free garage parking is also available.
Our main goal is to evaluate patients and design a personalized treatment plan that decreases the risk of aneurysm rupture. Treatment is determined according to the severity and size of a patient’s abdominal aortic aneurysm and includes:
The Fireman Vascular Center participates in major clinical studies evaluating new technologies and devices to treat abdominal and thoracic aortic disease. This allows us to bring our patients promising new treatments as quickly as possible. Some of these studies include:
Patients interested in participating in clinical trials should contact their provider for more information.
View a sample of our clinical research
Thoracic aortic disease affects the portion of the aorta that is in the chest and requires treatment from both cardiac and vascular specialists. Recognizing this approach, Mass General formed the Thoracic Aortic Center, a multidisciplinary program that brings together a team of specialists - cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, vascular and endovascular surgeons - all dedicated to treating thoracic aortic disease. The center attracts patients from across the nation and world for its specialized treatment of acute and chronic aortic dissections, thoracic and thoraco-abdominal aortic aneurysms, Marfan syndrome and coarctation of the aorta.
Our renowned specialists evaluate patients, determine if an intervention is needed and, if so, the appropriate timing for treatment. Advanced treatment options include:
Read more about advanced treatments available at the Thoracic Aortic Center
The Fireman Vascular Center has a long tradition of excellence in clinical care, and our physicians are national leaders in the diagnosis and treatment of abdominal and thoracic aortic disease. We are at the forefront of new research and serve on national and international professional boards and societies, including the:
Our physicians are committed to teaching patients and other health care professionals about the latest treatments for aortic disease. Mass General physicians have trained clinicians around the world in several techniques, including stent graft repair of abdominal aortic aneurysms.
Our dedicated nurse coordinator is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm to take relevant information about your condition and symptoms and to make a timely appointment with the most appropriate specialist. Call 877-644-8346 or request an appointment online
We strive to see patients as soon as possible and assign every patient one clinician to organize care between members of our multidisciplinary team. From diagnosis to treatment and follow up, this physician guides patients through the treatment process.
The care team at the Fireman Vascular Center encourages all patients and family members to learn more about conditions and diseases that affect the cardiovascular system. The links below provide more information about vascular conditions and diseases that might be treated within this program.
An abdominal aortic aneurysm, also called AAA or triple A, is a bulging, weakened area in the wall of the aorta (the largest artery in the body) resulting in an abnormal widening or ballooning greater than 50 percent of the normal diameter (width).
An aneurysm is a bulging, weakened area in the wall of a blood vessel resulting in an abnormal widening or ballooning greater than 50 percent of the normal diameter
Atherosclerosis is a thickening or hardening of the arteries caused by a build-up of plaque in the inner lining of an artery.
A thoracic aortic aneurysm, also called TAA, is a bulging, weakened area in the wall of the thoracic aorta (the largest artery in the body), resulting in an abnormal widening or ballooning.
Mass General is dedicated to ensuring that people understand their health care choices and have the necessary information to make decisions affecting their health and well being. The related support and wellness information listed below can play a role in treatment options.
When you exercise, you'll breathe faster and more deeply. This maximizes the amount of oxygen in your blood.
Many vascular conditions can be improved by changing certain lifestyle factors. Maintaining a healthy weight is one of many factors. If you are trying to make heart-healthy changes to your diet, it is helpful to know some basics about nutrition, starting with the components of food.
Diseases caused by smoking kill more than 437,900 people in the United States each year. Around 35 percent of these deaths were cardiovascular related.
A good indicator of how much fat you carry is the Body Mass Index (BMI). Although it is not a perfect measure, it gives a fairly accurate assessment of how much of your body is composed of fat.
Learn how physicians at the Massachusetts General Hospital Thoracic Aortic Center diagnose and treat thoracic aortic disease, a condition that affects the portion of the aorta that is in the chest and requires treatment from both cardiac and vascular specialists.
After renowned pianist Menahem Pressler suffered a life-threatening aneurysm, he entrusted his care to an Mass General surgeon Virendra Patel, MD, MPH, with an innovative grafting procedure.
When Richard Horgan, age 72, was vacationing with the family at Disney World, he began to speak haltingly - with a slight stutter. Before the week was over, Richard would be diagnosed with stroke, serious kidney problems, and abdominal aortic aneurysm.
Eugene Tarsky, 73, had never heard of peripheral artery disease (PAD) when he was first diagnosed three years ago. Though the news was troubling, careful monitoring by doctors and a commitment to reducing his risk factors have kept him healthy and free from complications.
Nancy Hammer never thought about her vascular health until a day of shopping left her in serious pain.
Fireman Vascular Center physicians and scientists participate in international research and lead more than 70 clinical trials that evaluate current therapies and investigate new devices to treat vascular disease. These research efforts have led to a number of groundbreaking firsts, bringing innovative new treatments to the patient’s bedside.
Dr. Richard Cambria, chief of vascular surgery at Mass General, says family history can provide clues.
Vascular Center at Waltham52 Second Avenue, Suite 2100 Waltham, MA 02451 Phone: 877-644-8346 Hours: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Learn about our convenient Waltham location
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