Patients with recurrent carotid artery stenosis are sometimes referred for carotid angioplasty and stenting because of reports that carotid reoperation has a higher complication rate than primary carotid endarterectomy. The purpose of this study was to determine whether a difference exists between outcomes of primary carotid endarterectomy and reoperative carotid surgery.Medical records were reviewed for all carotid operations performed from September 1993 through March 1998 by vascular surgery faculty at a single academic center. The results of primary carotid endarterectomy and operation for recurrent carotid stenosis were compared.A total of 390 operations were performed on 352 patients. Indications for primary carotid endarterectomy (n = 350) were asymptomatic high-grade stenosis in 42% of the cases, amaurosis fugax and transient ischemic symptoms in 35%, global symptoms in 14%, and previous stroke in 9%. Indications for reoperative carotid surgery (n = 40) were symptomatic recurrent lesions in 50% of the cases and progressive high-grade asymptomatic stenoses in 50%. The results of primary carotid endarterectomy were no postoperative deaths, an overall stroke rate of 1.1% (three postoperative strokes, one preoperative stroke after angiography), and no permanent cranial nerve deficits. The results of operations for recurrent carotid stenosis were no postoperative deaths, no postoperative strokes, and no permanent cranial nerve deficits. In the primary carotid endarterectomy group, the mean hospital length of stay was 2.6 +/- 1. 1 days and the mean hospital cost was $9700. In the reoperative group, the mean length of stay was 2.6 +/- 1.5 days and the mean cost was $13,700. The higher cost of redo surgery is accounted for by a higher preoperative cerebral angiography rate (90%) in redo cases as compared with primary endarterectomy (40%).In this series of 390 carotid operations, the procedure-related stroke/death rate was 0.8%. There were no differences between the stroke-death rates after primary carotid endarterectomy and operation for recurrent carotid stenosis. Operation for recurrent carotid stenosis is as safe and effective as primary carotid endarterectomy and should continue to be standard treatment.
View details for Web of Science ID 000081410700007
View details for PubMedID 10394151