“Aortic Arch Syndrome and Pulseless Disease”This is an inflammatory disease which affects the walls of the arteries. It mainly affects aorta which is the main blood vessel from the heart to the lower abdomen, as well as the blood vessels that attach to it. This disease is more common in young Asian women although found globally. The ratio of this disease is about 1:10 in comparison to male and females. This disease generally affects people in the age group of 15-30 years. In the Western countries, atherosclerosis is a more frequent cause of obstruction of the aortic arch vessels than is Takayasu’s arteritis.
It is also known as “Pulseless Disease” because pulses on the upper extremities, such as the wrist pulse, may not be able to be felt.
About 50% of the patients suffering from this disease generally feel unwell. The other common symptoms are fever, night sweats, weight loss, pain in the joints and tiredness. The clinical symptoms may be reduction in Hemoglobin (Hb) and marked rise in ESR (Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate). This phase gradually subsides with time and the second phase of this disease is marked by inflammatory and destructive changes in the aorta and its branches. The other patients of Takayasu’s arteritis have late vascular changes without any symptoms. In the advanced stage of this disease the weakness of the arterial walls results in ballooning up arteries and as the size increases, there is an increased risk of rupture, which can result in severe hemorrhage, other complications or even death.
The exact causes of this disease are not known. However, it can be assimilated that the cause of this disease could be failure/disruption of the nervous mechanism controlling the functioning of the arteries, in particular aorta and its branches.