Blockages (stenosis) in the carotid arteries — the blood vessels in your neck that provide your brain with most of its blood supply — cause carotid artery disease, which is responsible for more than a third of all strokes. Treating carotid artery disease is critical to prevent a stroke. Vascular surgeons at NewYork-Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital offer carotid artery surgery for some patients with advanced carotid stenosis.
Specialists in Carotid Artery Surgery
If you have carotid artery disease that becomes severe despite medication or lifestyle changes, such as smoking cessation, you may benefit from a surgical procedure called carotid endarterectomy. The vascular surgeon removes plaque from the carotid arteries to allow blood to flow to the brain without obstruction.
- The surgeon first makes a small incision on the side of the neck to expose the artery. The affected area of the artery is clamped so that the surgeon does not disturb blood flow; sometimes a shunt is used to divert blood that generally flows down this pathway.
- The artery is then opened, and a special instrument is used to remove plaque from the inside the artery which is then stitched closed.
- In some cases, the surgeon may widen that area of the artery with a synthetic graft.