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International Angiology 2003 September;22(3):263-72


lingua: Inglese

The Asymptomatic Carotid Stenosis and Risk of Stroke (ACSRS) study. Aims and results of quality control

Nicolaides A. 1, 2, 3, Sabetai M. 1, Kakkos S. K. 1, Dhanjil S. 1, Tegos T. 1, Stevens J. M. 4, Thomas D. J. 5, Francis S. 1, Griffin M. 1, Geroulakos G. 1, 2, Ioannidou E. 3, Kyriacou E. 3, 6, for the ACSRS Study Group

1 Department of Vascular Surgery, Imperial College, London, UK; 2 Department of Vascular Surgery, Ealing Hospital, London, UK; 3 Department of Neurovascular Sciences, The Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics, Nicosia, Cyprus; 4 Department of Radiology, St. Mary’s Hospital, London, UK; 5 Department of Neurology, St. Mary’s Hospital, London, UK; 6 Department of Computational Intelligence, The Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics, Nicosia, Cyprus


Aim. The results of the Asymptomatic Carotid Atherosclerosis Study (ACAS) study have provided the first scientific evidence that in patients with asymptomatic carotid stenosis greater than 60% carotid endarterectomy reduces the risk of stroke from 2% to 1% per year. The implications are that approximately 20 operations need to be performed in order to prevent 1 stroke in 5 years. The aims of the Asymptomatic Carotid Stenosis and Risk of Stroke (ACSRS) study are to identify a subgroup or subgroups at a risk for stroke higher than 4% and a group at a risk for stroke less than 1% per year using systemic and local risk factors (plaque characterization) in addition to the degree of stenosis. The aim of this paper is to present the protocol and the results of the quality control.
Methods. The ACSRS is a multicentre natural history study of patients with asymptomatic internal carotid diameter stenosis greater than 50% in relation to the bulb. The degree of stenosis is graded using multiple established ultrasonic duplex criteria. In addition, ultrasonic plaque characterization is performed and clinical risk factors and medications are recorded. Training is provided centrally. All carotid ultrasound examinations are recorded on video-tape which together with CT-brain scans and ECG are analysed at the coordinating centre with feedback information to partner centres.
Results. The video recordings and analysis of data centrally with feed back information have provided quality control with a significant improvement not only in the completion of data forms but also in the grading of internal carotid stenosis and plaque recordings using ultrasound.
Conclusion. The high level of quality of data collected will add credibility to the results of the ACSRS study and may eventually promote the development of international standards of plaque imaging and characterization.

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