Outcomes of carotid artery stenting versus historical surgical controls for radiation-induced carotid stenosis

Tiziano Tallarita, Gustavo S. Oderich, Giuseppe Lanzino, Harry Cloft, David Kallmes, Thomas C. Bower, Audra A. Duncan, Peter Gloviczki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate the outcomes of carotid artery stenting (CAS) and open surgical repair (OR) for treatment of radiation-induced carotid stenosis (RICS). Methods: We retrospectively reviewed 60 patients treated for 73 RICSs from a group of 5,824 patients who had carotid interventions between 1992 and 2009. Thirty-three patients (37 arteries) were treated with CAS and 27 patients (36 arteries) with OR. CAS was performed using embolic protection as part of a prospective institutional registry since 2003. End-points included mortality, stroke, myocardial infarction (MI), cranial nerve injury (CNI), wound complication, restenosis, and reintervention. Results: Demographics and cardiovascular risk factors were similar in both groups, with the exception of higher rates (P < .05) of hyperlipidemia (81% vs 56%) and coronary artery disease (63% vs 33%) in OR patients. There were more patients with tracheostomy (31% vs 4%) and time interval from irradiation to intervention was longer in the CAS group. There were no early deaths. At 30 days, OR was associated with one (3%) stroke, two (5.5%) MIs, six (17%) CNIs, and three (8%) wound complications. OR patients with prior radical neck dissections had more wound complications (14% vs 5%) and CNIs (28% vs 9%) compared with those without neck dissections. In the CAS group, there were two (6%) strokes and no MIs, CNIs, or wound complications. Mean length of hospital stay was longer after OR than CAS (4.1 ± 3.7 days vs 2.4 ± 2.1 days; P = .02). Median follow-up was 58 months. At 7 years, OR was associated with higher patient survival (75% ± 15% vs 29% ± 13%, P = .008) and freedom from neurological events (100% vs 57% ± 9.5%, P = .058), but similar freedom from restenosis (80% ± 10% vs 72% ± 9%) and reinterventions (87% ± 10% vs 86% ± 9%) compared with CAS. Conclusion: Carotid artery stenting for radiation-induced stenosis has the advantages of no CNI or wound complications with similar early stroke rate compared with open carotid repair. However, the lower freedom from neurological events may offset the early benefits of carotid stenting in patients who are considered good candidates for open surgery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)629-636.e5
JournalJournal of vascular surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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