Treatment options
for carotid artery disease

This site is dedicated to education on the treatment options available to minimize the risk of stroke from carotid artery disease. Read below for some of the key considerations as you and your physician determine the appropriate treatment option.

Treatment options
for carotid artery disease

This site is dedicated to education on the treatment options available to minimize the risk of stroke from carotid artery disease. Read below for some of the key considerations as you and your physician determine the appropriate treatment option.

Treatment options
for carotid
artery disease

This site is dedicated to education on the treatment options available to minimize the risk of stroke from carotid artery disease. Read below for some of the key considerations as you and your physician determine the appropriate treatment option.

Carotid artery disease is a significant cause of the 800,000+ strokes that impact people in the US each year.

Carotid Artery Disease

The carotid arteries are vital blood vessels in your neck that deliver oxygen-rich blood to your brain. Carotid artery disease occurs when the these blood vessels become clogged with fatty material called plaque. When plaque builds up, the vessels begin to narrow and slow down blood flow. This condition can cause a stroke if blood flow stops or plaque fragments travel to the brain.

Diagnosing the Disease

Carotid artery disease develops slowly, often without any symptoms. Fortunately, physicians can screen patients using simple, non-invasive techniques including ultrasound. Blockages can also be found when a physician hears a sound through a stethoscope placed on the neck. The sound is caused by blood flowing past the blockage. However, in some patients, the first sign of the presence of a blockage in the carotid artery is a stroke. When a patient is admitted to the hospital with a stroke, one of the initial tests is to check if there is carotid artery blockage.

Diagnosing the Disease

Carotid artery disease develops slowly, often without any symptoms. Fortunately, physicians can screen patients using simple, non-invasive techniques including ultrasound. Blockages can also be found when a physician hears a sound through a stethoscope placed on the neck. The sound is caused by blood flowing past the blockage. However, in some patients, the first sign of the presence of a blockage in the carotid artery is a stroke. When a patient is admitted to the hospital with a stroke, one of the initial tests is to check if there is carotid artery blockage.

The Risk of Stroke

Since stroke deprives your brain of oxygen, it only takes minutes for brain cells to begin to die. Every year, 15 million people worldwide suffer a stroke, also known as a brain attack. Nearly 6 million die and another 5 million are left permanently disabled. Carotid artery disease is estimated to be the source of stroke in up to a third of cases, with 427,000 new diagnoses of the disease each year in the United States alone.

You may be at risk if you have two or more of the following:

High cholesterol

Large amounts of cholesterol in the blood can build up and cause blood clots — leading to a stroke.

High blood pressure

This is the leading cause of stroke. Know your blood pressure and have it checked every year.

Tobacco smoking

The nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke damage the cardiovascular system and pave the way for a stroke.

Family history

If your close blood relations have had a stroke, you are at higher risk of stroke.

You may be at risk if you have two or more of the following:

High cholesterol

Large amounts of cholesterol in the blood can build up and cause blood clots — leading to a stroke.

High blood pressure

This is the leading cause of stroke. Know your blood pressure and have it checked every year.

Tobacco smoking

The nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke damage the cardiovascular system and pave the way for a stroke.

Family history

If your close blood relations have had a stroke, you are at higher risk of stroke.

Signs and Symptoms

Carotid artery disease develops slowly. Often called the silent killer, the first symptom for a patient at risk for stroke is a stroke itself or a “mini-stroke” called a transient ischemic attack (TIA). A TIA is a temporary stroke that resolves itself in 24 hours or less. It is considered a warning sign for a full-blown stroke. If someone is having stroke-like symptoms (weakness/numbness on one side, loss of eyesight/speech, garbled speech, dizziness or fainting), they should seek immediate medical attention and be evaluated for carotid artery disease. If you suspect a stroke, remember to act F.A.S.T.

Face Drooping

Look for an uneven smile

Arm Weakness

Check if one arm is weak

Slurred Speech

Listen for slurred speech

Time to Call 9-1-1

Right away

Signs and Symptoms

Carotid artery disease develops slowly. Often called the silent killer, the first symptom for a patient at risk for stroke is a stroke itself or a “mini-stroke” called a transient ischemic attack (TIA). A TIA is a temporary stroke that resolves itself in 24 hours or less. It is considered a warning sign for a full-blown stroke. If someone is having stroke-like symptoms (weakness/numbness on one side, loss of eyesight/speech, garbled speech, dizziness or fainting), they should seek immediate medical attention and be evaluated for carotid artery disease. If you suspect a stroke, remember to act F.A.S.T.

Face Drooping

Look for an uneven smile

Arm Weakness

Check if one arm is weak

Slurred Speech

Listen for slurred speech

Time to Call 9-1-1

Right away

Treatment Options for Your Carotid Artery Disease

If you are diagnosed with carotid artery disease, talk to your primary care doctor about when you should schedule an appointment with a vascular specialist. Treatment options for carotid artery disease depend upon the severity of your overall condition and symptoms. Moderate disease may not require an interventional procedure, as some individuals can manage the disease with medications and lifestyle changes. More severe blockages may require surgery.

Transcarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR)

Medical 
Therapy

Transfemoral Carotid
Artery Stenting (TF-CAS)

Carotid
Endarterectomy (CEA)

Treatment Options for Your Carotid Artery Disease

Treatment options for carotid artery disease depend upon the severity of your overall condition and symptoms. Moderate disease may not require an interventional procedure, as some individuals can manage the disease with medications and lifestyle changes. More severe blockages may require surgery.

Transcarotid
Artery
Revascularization
(TCAR)

Medical 
Therapy

Transfemoral 
Carotid
Artery Stenting
(TF-CAS)

Carotid
Endarterectomy (CEA)

Discover Patient Stories

“It’s a great feeling to be able to enjoy life.”

Fisherman Jackie went to his eye doctor after experiencing fainting spells and blurry vision. They found his left carotid artery was clogged with disease-causing, fatty build up. After seeing a vascular specialist, he was diagnosed with carotid artery disease. Eager to get back on the water, Jackie decided to receive the TCAR procedure.

Diagnosed with Carotid Artery Disease?

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Diagnosed with Carotid Artery Disease?

Search physicians and practices that perform procedures using the latest technology

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