The aortic valve sinus index (AVSI) is a measurement of the size of the aortic valve opening in relation to the size of the patient’s aorta. This index is calculated by dividing the cross-sectional area of the aortic valve opening by the cross-sectional area of the patient’s body surface area.
What Is The Aortic Valve?
The aortic valve is one of four valves in the heart that regulates blood flow through the circulatory system. It separates the left ventricle from the aorta and opens and closes with each heartbeat, allowing oxygen-rich blood to flow out to the body.
Why Is AVSI Important?
AVSI is an important measurement because it can indicate whether or not a patient has an enlarged aorta, which can lead to serious health complications such as aneurysm or dissection. An enlarged aorta can put pressure on surrounding organs and tissues, leading to pain, discomfort, and potentially life-threatening conditions.
How Is AVSI Measured?
AVSI is typically measured using echocardiography, which uses sound waves to create images of the heart and surrounding blood vessels. During an echocardiogram, doctors can measure both the cross-sectional area of the aortic valve opening and the patient’s body surface area.
What Are Normal AVSI Values?
Normal AVSI values range between 1.6-2.6 cm²/m² for men and 1.4-2.4 cm²/m² for women, although these values may vary depending on age and other factors such as body composition.
- Risk Factors:
- Certain medical conditions such as hypertension or connective tissue disorders
- A family history of aortic disease
- A history of smoking
- Chest pain or discomfort
- Shortness of breath
- Dizziness or fainting
- Treatment Options:
- Medication to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of aortic dissection
- Surgery to repair or replace the aortic valve or aorta if necessary
- Lifestyle changes such as exercise and a healthy diet to reduce risk factors
AVSI is an important measurement in assessing a patient’s risk for serious health complications related to an enlarged aorta. If you have any symptoms or risk factors for aortic disease, it is important to speak with your healthcare provider about getting screened and taking steps to reduce your risk.