Carotid artery surgery

Carotid endarterectomy; CAS surgery; Carotid artery stenosis - surgery; Endarterectomy - carotid artery

Carotid artery surgery is a procedure to restore proper blood flow to the brain.

The carotid artery brings needed blood to your brain and face. You have one of these arteries on each side of your neck. Blood flow in this artery can become partly or totally blocked by fatty material called plaque. This can reduce the blood supply to your brain and cause a stroke.

There are 2 procedures to treat a carotid artery that has plaque buildup in it. This article focuses on a surgery called endarterectomy. The other method is called angioplasty with stent placement.

Carotid stenosis, X-ray of the left artery

A carotid arteriogram is an X-ray study designed to determine if there is narrowing or other abnormality in the carotid artery, a main artery to the brain. This is an angiogram of the left common carotid artery (both front-to-back and side views) showing a severe narrowing (stenosis) of the internal carotid artery just beyond the division of the common carotid artery into the internal and external branches.

Carotid stenosis, X-ray of the right artery

This is an angiogram of the right carotid artery showing a severe narrowing (stenosis) of the internal carotid artery just past the carotid fork. There is enlargement of the vein or ulceration in the area after the stenosis in this close-up film. Note the narrowed segment toward the bottom of the picture.

Arterial tear in internal carotid artery

Cholesterol may build-up in the lining of an internal carotid artery.

Atherosclerosis of internal carotid artery

The build-up of plaque in the internal carotid artery may lead to narrowing and irregularity of the artery's lumen, preventing proper blood flow to the brain. More commonly, as the narrowing worsens, pieces of plaque in the internal carotid artery can break free, travel to the brain and block blood vessels that supply blood to the brain. This leads to stroke, with possible paralysis or other deficits.

Arterial plaque build-up

The build-up of plaque in the inner layer of the wall of an artery may lead to narrowing and irregularity. Where the narrowing is severe, there is a risk that the vessel can block completely if a thrombus forms in the diseased segment.

Carotid artery surgery - series

There are four carotid arteries, with a pair located on each side of the neck. This includes the right- and left-internal carotid arteries, and the right- and left-external carotid arteries. The carotid arteries deliver oxygen-rich blood from the heart to both the head and brain.

Description

Why the Procedure is Performed

Risks

Before the Procedure

After the Procedure

Outlook (Prognosis)