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Indexed/Abstracted in: BIOSIS Previews, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 1,632
Online ISSN 1827-191X
Bechtel J. F. M., Bartels C., Hopstein S., Horsch S.
From the Department of Vascular Surgery Krankenhaus Porz am Rhein, Teaching Hospital University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
Background. Major aortic surgery carries a high risk of stroke. Carotid artery occlusive disease (CAOD) has been identified as one of the contributing risk factors. Regarding the long-term prevention of stroke, carotid endartectomy (CEA) seems to be superior to the best medical treatment in patients with high-grade CAOD. However, the role of CEA prior to major aortic surgery has not been studied.
Methods. Design: Prospective study, observational design. Subjects and setting: 201 patients referred to a community hospital for major aortic surgery. Intervention: The patients were non-invasively screened by continuous-wave and duplex Doppler ultrasonography for the presence of CAOD. In 41 patients with angiographically confirmed high-grade CAOD, CEA was performed prior to major aortic surgery. Main outcome measure: Combined mortality and major morbidity from CEA and abdominal aortic surgery.
Results. There was no mortality or morbidity related to CEA. Total perioperative mortality related to major aortic reconstruction was 3.5%. No new perioperative focal neurologic deficits occurred except for one fatal stroke in a patient in whom CEA had been judged not to be indicated.
Conclusions. CEA can be performed safely prior to major aortic surgery resulting in excellent overall neurologic outcome in patients with high-grade CAOD. We propose that patients scheduled for major aortic surgery be screened for the presence of high-grade CAOD and that CEA be performed first, if indicated according to published guidelines.