UCLA is world-renowned for its pioneering research on aortic abnormalities. Its vascular surgeons were the first on the West Coast to perform endovascular aortic aneurysm repair in 1994. Since then, UCLA surgeons have performed more than 2,200 endovascular aortic repairs. UCLA scientists were the first to develop a hybrid surgical technique to treat aortic aneurysms in the abdominal area. Combining open surgery and endovascular repair, this operation is designed to minimize risks and maximize the effectiveness of the intervention. In 2011, UCLA was one of only five international centers selected for trials of a fenestrated endograft for treatment of abdominal aortic aneurysms that occur near the arteries of the kidneys. This special synthetic graft, inserted using endovascular techniques, has openings positioned to maintain blood flow at the point where the aorta branches off into the kidneys.
The UCLA Aortic Center translates research expertise into top-quality clinical care. Its multidisciplinary approach, involving surgeons, cardiologists, radiologists, anesthesiologists and other specialists, provides comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of aortic pathologies. It offers open surgery, endovascular and hybrid repairs for patients with aortic aneurysms. Specialists at the center can treat other aortic abnormalities, such as aortic blockages to major branches leading to the brain, abdominal organs or extremities; traumatic injuries; and a range of congenital conditions. Identification and control of risk factors, together with medical management, is an integral part of the comprehensive approach that the center offers to patients with aortic pathologies.