Recent literature advocates carotid endarterectomy on duplex alone. The authors hypothesized that carotid angiography adds information that alters clinical management in a substantial number of patients compared to the use of carotid duplex examination alone. The records of 182 consecutive patients who underwent carotid artery duplex and subsequent carotid/cerebral angiography for suspected carotid artery stenosis between January 1998 and April 1999 were reviewed retrospectively. Carotid artery duplex examinations were stratified based on stenosis: <39%, 40% to 59%, 60% to 79% (moderate), 80% to 99% (severe), 100%. Carotid stenosis on angiograms was determined by NASCET criteria. New information found at angiography included vertebral, subclavian, or arch atherosclerosis, intracranial pathosis, or a change in duplex stenosis category to a degree of stenosis not requiring surgery. Clinical importance was attributed to angiograms that altered the patients' management plan. Angiography provided additional information in 53% (97/182) of patients. Vertebral disease was found in 25.1%, subclavian disease in 16.4%, intracranial disease in 15.3%, aortic arch disease in 3.3%. Patient treatment was altered in 30% (55/182). Angiographic findings downgraded the stenosis to medical therapy in 20.9% (38/182). The surgical plan was influenced in 5.5% (10/182). Nine intracranial aneurysms were discovered. Carotid angiography was essential for vascular bypass surgery planning in 3.3% (6/182). Angioplasty was performed in 2.2% (4/182). The accurate determination of stenosis is critical in determining optimal treatment of patients with carotid artery stenosis. Routine carotid angiography remains valuable in the clinical treatment of these patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine