Sinus of Valsalva Aneurysm

A ruptured sinus of Valsalva aneurysm results in a communication between the aortic sinus and the atrium or right ventricle. The abnormality is often congenital, but may also be acquired from endocarditis or trauma. The defect is adjacent to the aortic valve and may be associated with a leak in the valve.

The clinical presentation depends on the size of the communication. Small defects may not cause symptoms, but can be diagnosed by the presence of a prominent continuous murmur. Larger defects may cause symptoms of shortness of breath and volume overload of the heart. Surgical repair is indicated but requires expertise in the repair of congenital heart disease.