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 TOPIC OF THE ISSUE: REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 59  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 376--382

Recent concepts in the management of extracranial carotid stenosis: Carotid endarterectomy versus carotid artery stenting


Department of Neurology, Head of Research, Betty Cowan Research and Innovation Centre, Christian Medical College, Ludhiana, Punjab, India

Correspondence Address:
Jeyaraj D Pandian
Department of Neurology, Head of Research, Betty Cowan Research and Innovation Centre, Christian Medical College, Ludhiana, Punjab - 141 008
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0028-3886.82741

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Carotid stenosis is seen in 10% of patients with ischemic stroke, and carotid endarterectomy (CEA) and carotid artery stenting (CAS) are the two invasive treatments options available. Pooled analysis of the three largest randomized trials of CEA involving more than 3000 symptomatic patients estimated 30-day stroke and death rate at 7.1% after CEA. Some subgroups among the symptomatic patients appeared to have more benefit from CEA. These include patients aged 75 years or more, patients with ulcerated plaques, and patients with recent transient ischemic attacks within 2 weeks of randomization. Selection of asymptomatic patients for carotid revascularization should be guided by an assessment of comorbid conditions, life expectancy, and other individual factors, and should include a thorough discussion of the risks and benefits of the procedure with an understanding of patient preferences. The recent trials comparing CEA with CAS has not established its superiority over CEA. The carotid revascularization endarterectomy versus stenting (CREST) study showed that CAS is still associated with a higher periprocedural risk of stroke or death than CEA. In patients over 70 years of age, CEA is clearly superior to CAS. The increased risk of nonfatal myocardial infarction in the CREST group subjected to CEA clearly suggests that patients being considered for CEA or CAS require a careful preliminary cardiac evaluation. CAS can be justified for patients whose medical comorbidities or cervical anatomy make them questionable candidates for CEA. The benefit of revascularization by either method versus modern aggressive medical therapy has not been established for patients with asymptomatic carotid stenosis.






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