Find out what Carotid Artery Stenting is, what the procedure involves and how private treatment can quickly improve your quality of life. You’ll learn the investigations you’ll need beforehand and what happens after the procedure. With our patient-centred approach, you’ll quickly get the quality of your life back! Choose cardiologists that care and book your consultation today.
What is Carotid Artery Stenting?
Carotid artery stenting is a minimally invasive procedure used to treat narrowed or blocked carotid arteries which can otherwise lead to stroke. A stent (small mesh tube) is inserted into the blocked carotid artery through a catheter, and the stent is then expanded to hold the artery open and restore blood flow.
The carotid arteries supply blood to the brain. There are two carotid arteries and two vertebral arteries that together supply the whole of the brain with blood. Narrowing of the internal carotid artery (ICA) is associated with a risk of stroke in people who are healthy and well. Several studies have suggested that treating these narrowings reduces the risk of stroke compared to tablets alone.
Who needs Carotid Artery Stenting?
In about 5% of cases, post-stroke investigations will find that you’ve got a narrowing in the carotid artery. This means treatment is urgently needed to remove the narrowing. The benefits of removing the narrowing are far greater than in those who have not had a stroke. Careful consideration needs to be made on the choice of treatment, which could include neck scans and brain imaging. It will often involve input from a multi-skilled team made up of neurologists, radiologists, vascular surgeons and cardiologists.
Will I need any scans beforehand?
You’ll need a Carotid Artery Scan (or duplex scan) to assess the thickness of the inner part of your carotid arteries. If your cardiologist confirms there’s a narrowed Internal Carotid Artery (ICA), you’ll need further treatment.
What does the procedure involve?
Generally, you’ll do medical therapy alongside the procedure. There are two treatments available to treat the narrowing:
- Carotid Endarterectomy (CEA)
- Carotid Artery Stenting (CAS).
For the majority, the choice between CAS and CEA will be made by you and your cardiologist together. Carotid Artery Stenting involves a similar procedure to Coronary Angioplasty (PCI), with the insertion of a plastic pipe from the groin up to the neck. The procedure is typically performed under local anaesthesia, and you’ll be able to go home the same day.
Are there any risks?
The danger from CAS is that your brain will be unprotected from debris going upwards. Therefore, CAS is now usually done with a protection device (filter) in place. The risk of bleeding from the leg is about 1%, while the risk of stroke is 1-2%. This has to be balanced with the risk of continuing with medical therapy – which is extremely high if a recent stroke has occurred before identifying a narrowing of your internal carotid artery.
Please note that death is very rare.
What happens after the procedure?
The recovery time for Carotid Artery Stenting varies depending on your overall health. Typically, you’ll be able to return to normal activities within a week or two, but it may take several weeks for a full recovery. Your cardiologist will give you a more specific estimate based on your individual situation.
Ready to book your Carotid Artery Stenting?
Get seen quickly
As we’re a private clinic, your appointments work around you. Get your narrowed Internal Carotid Artery treated quickly, significantly reduce your chance of stroke and enjoy life again.
Private Carotid Artery Stenting is covered by most private medical insurance policies, but please contact your insurance company prior to your appointment to obtain your pre-authorisation code to speed things up.
Our price list is available on request and is on display in our waiting area. For an estimation of costs please get in touch.
Why choose London Cardiovascular Clinic?
- We offer a patient-centred approach, so you’ll feel looked after and have all your questions answered
- Choose from our flexible appointment times and get seen at your convenience
- Personalised treatment plans
- Get consultancy & treatment from London’s top cardiologists – each with their own special interests
- You’ll experience a much more welcoming and relaxing experience at our private clinic than you would elsewhere
- Video resources to help you further understand your condition and the procedures involved