Coarctation of The Aorta

Clinical History

This 18 year old female presented with a history of shortness of breath for 2 years. For the 2 months prior to referral this had become progressively worse and was associated with ankle swelling and headache. Examination revealed BP 160/70 mm Hg, pulse 90 and regular. A blowing systolic murmur was heard at the base of the heart, and left side of the sternum. A systolic bruit was also present over a large area in the centre of the back. No palpable femoral pulses or abdominal aortic pulse were present. X-ray showed notching of the ribs and an absent aortic "knuckle". The patient was thought to be a case of coarctation of the aorta and this was corrected at operation with satisfactory post-operative results.


The specimen is of the narrowed segment of aorta removed at operation.