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      Insuffisance aortique syphilitique: à propos d’un cas Translated title: Syphilitic aortic insufficiency: report of a case


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          La syphilis tertiaire et ses complications cardiovasculaires sont devenues rares dans les pays développés mais restent encore préoccupante dans nos pays. Les atteintes cardiovasculaires portent fréquemment sur la racine et l’arche aortique. Nous rapportons ici un cas d’insuffisance aortique syphilitique chez un patient de 70 ans admis dans le service de cardiologie du centre hospitalier universitaire de Bobo-Dioulasso. L’examen clinique retrouvait une insuffisance cardiaque globale stade III, un frémissement et un souffle diastolique d’insuffisance aortique importante confirmé à l’échocardiographie Doppler, associés à des douleurs précordiales angineuses. L’examen cutané montrait des lésions à type de gommes syphilitiques à localisations multiples. L’électrocardiogramme objectivait une hypertrophie ventriculaire gauche avec un indice de Sokolov à 49 millimètre et le télécoeur une cardiomégalie avec un index cardio-thoracique à 0,70. La sérologie était positive pour le RPR à 1/8 et le TPHA à 1/640. L’évolution clinique sous la pénicillino-thérapie surveillée et le traitement spécifique de l’insuffisance cardiaque a été favorable. La découverte d’une insuffisance aortique chez les sujets de plus de 60 ans dans nos pays devrait faire rechercher une syphilis tertiaire par une sérologie pour une prise en charge adéquate.

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          Natural history of syphilitic aortitis.

          No large studies of cardiovascular syphilis at necropsy have been reported since 1964. We examined at necropsy 90 patients who had characteristic morphologic findings of syphilitic aortitis. None had ever undergone cardiovascular surgery. With the exception of 2 cases seen more recently, the hearts and aortas of the 90 patients were examined and categorized by one of us (W.C.R.) from 1966 to 1990. All 90 had extensive involvement of the tubular portion of the ascending aorta by the syphilitic process, which spared the sinuses of Valsalva in all but 4 patients. The aortic arch was also involved in 49 (91%) of 54 patients and the descending thoracic aorta in 47 (90%) of 52 patients. Syphilis was the cause of death in 23 (26%) of the 90 patients. It was secondary to rupture of the ascending or descending thoracic aorta in 12, severe aortic regurgitation leading to heart failure in 10, and severe narrowing of the aortic ostium of the right coronary artery in 1 patient. Of the 40 patients who had undergone serologic testing for syphilis, 28 (70%) had a positive (reactive) finding. Those patients with a negative or nonreactive test or who did not undergo a serologic test for syphilis had morphologic and histologic findings in the aorta at necropsy similar to the findings of those patients who had had a positive serologic test for syphilis. In conclusion, cardiovascular syphilis has not disappeared. In patients with dilated ascending aortas, with or without aortic regurgitation, a serologic test for syphilis is recommended. If the findings are positive or if characteristic morphologic features of cardiovascular syphilis are suspected, irrespective of the results of the serologic tests, antibiotic therapy appears desirable.
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            Syphilitic aortitis: rearing of the ugly head.

            Syphilitic aortitis has been relegated to the category of rare cardiovascular disease or a "medical curiosity" in the west. The same situation may not exist in developing countries due to the stigmata that continue to remain attached to sexually-transmitted diseases in general. To study the prevalence of syphilitic aortitis among autopsied non-atherosclerotic aortic diseases encountered in a span of 15 years. Retrospective, autopsy-based study. Among 187 cases of non-atherosclerotic diseases of the aorta, 44 had been diagnosed as syphilitic aortitis on the basis of the pathological features and serology. The demographic details and modes of clinical presentation were retrieved from the health records. Depending on the presence of complicating lesions, the cases were classified as uncomplicated or complicated aortitis. The 44 cases of syphilitic aortitis formed 23.5 % of the non-atherosclerotic aortic diseases. They were predominantly seen in males in the fifth decade, who often presented with valvular regurgitation, aneurysmal disease or myocardial ischemia; 13.6 % of patients were asymptomatic. Blood VDRL results were available in 19 patients; 84.2 % were positive. Concomitant involvement of the ascending, transverse and descending thoracic was seen in 45.5 % of cases. None had uncomplicated aortitis. Complications in the form of aortic regurgitation (72.7 %), coronary ostial stenosis (59 %) and aneurysms (59 %) frequently coexisted. Thirty-five aneurysms were present in 59 %, chiefly involving the aorta. We found syphilitic aortitis to be a common cause of aortitis at autopsy. Diagnosis should be made with the help of characteristic pathological features correlated to the clinical context and appropriate serological tests.
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              The aetiology and course of isolated severe aortic regurgitation: a clinical, pathological, and echocardiographic study.

              Seventy two consecutive patients with severe isolated aortic regurgitation were evaluated by preoperative echocardiographic and angiographic assessment of the aortic root. Biopsy specimens of the aortic wall were taken at operation. Two major groups of patients were found: those with cusp derangement but normal aortic roots and those with normal cusps but dilated aortic roots. Of the 42 cases of abnormal cusps, 20 were rheumatic, 15 were infective, and six were bicuspid. One patient had a tear in an otherwise normal cusp. Of the 30 cases of abnormal roots but normal cusps, six had inflammatory changes (syphilis, Reiter's disease, giant cell aortitis) and 24 had root dilatation caused by non-inflammatory destruction of elastic laminae. Echocardiographic measurement of the aorta at the level of the top of the commissures predicted the findings at pathology. In 37 of 39 patients with cusp disease the measurement was less than 37 mm. In 27 of 33 patients with root disease the measurement was greater than or equal to 37 mm. This difference was statistically significant. There was no difference in the sizes of the prosthesis used in each group, suggesting that it was the diameter of the junction of the aorta with the sinuses rather than the junction of the sinuses with the ventricle that was important in aortic regurgitation. Clinical progression in patients with non-inflammatory aortic root disease is slower than in patients with infective disease but faster than in those with rheumatic cusp disease.

                Author and article information

                Pan Afr Med J
                Pan Afr Med J
                The Pan African Medical Journal
                The African Field Epidemiology Network
                11 July 2012
                : 12
                [1 ]Institut Supérieur des Sciences de la Santé/Université Polytechnique de Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso
                [2 ]Service de Cardiologie, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Souro Sanou, Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso
                [3 ]Unite de Formation et de Recherche-Science De la Santé (UFR-SDS), Université de Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
                [4 ]Service de cardiologie, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Yalgado Ouédraogo, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
                Author notes
                [& ]Corresponding author: Dr Yaméogo Aimé Arsène: Médecin cardiologue, Assistant en Cardiologie à l’Institut Supérieur des Sciences de la Santé/ Université Polytechnique de Bobo-Dioulasso. Service de Cardiologie du Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Souro Sanou (CHUSS). Adresse: 03 BP: 4086 Bobo-Dioulasso 03, Burkina Faso
                © Aimé Arsène Yaméogoa et al.

                The Pan African Medical Journal - ISSN 1937-8688. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Case Report

                insuffisance aortique,syphilis tertiaire,burkina-faso,aortic insufficiency,tertiary syphilis


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