In three patients with idiopathic mediastinal or retroperitoneal fibrosis, postmortem sections of the aorta showed aortitis (in one case) or extrusions of atheromatous debris into the inflamed adventitia (two cases). It is suggested that damage to the aortic wall, followed by adventitial inflammation due to allergy to a component of the atherosclerotic plaque, is one way in which this disease may develop.
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