Bloomberg News (12/15, Lauerman, Waters) reports that "the torn aorta that led to the death of Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, is an uncommon disorder that isn't always recognized, doctors said."
USA Today (12/15, Rubin) reports that approximately "3,000 Americans die each year from an aortic dissection, although the actual number probably is higher." USA Today adds that the book With Love and Laughter, by John Ritter's widow, Amy Yasbeck, "devotes chapter 24, titled 'From the Heart,' to the topic of aortic aneurysms. The chapter includes the 'Ritter Rules,' named for her late husband and based on new guidelines about the diagnosis and treatment of aortic aneurysms from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology." The Los Angeles Times (12/14, Forgione) "Booster Shots" blog also covered the story.