Emergent carotid endarterectomy versus stenting in acute stroke patients with tandem occlusion

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Abstract

Objective:

Acute stroke due to tandem cervical internal carotid artery (ICA) and intracranial large-vessel occlusion (ILVO) has a high rate of morbidity and mortality. The most appropriate treatment strategy for the extracranial culprit lesion remains unclear. In this study, we report our institutional outcomes with two approaches: emergent carotid endarterectomy (CEA) and carotid artery stenting (CAS).

Methods:

Patients with tandem ICA-ILVO were identified in a prospective mechanical thrombectomy (MT) database between July 2012 and April 2016. Patients had a concomitant complete ICA origin occlusion and occlusion of the intracranial ICA or M1 or M2 middle cerebral artery segment. Baseline characteristics, procedural data, and treatment times were reviewed. End points included good recanalization of both ICA and ILVO, symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage (defined by clinical decline of >4 points on the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale), and functional outcome at 90 days.

Results:

Forty-five patients had tandem ICA-ILVO occlusion; 27 patients underwent emergent CAS and 12 patients underwent emergent CEA after MT. Successful Thrombolysis in Cerebral Infarction grade 2B/3 recanalization was achieved in 92% of the CEA and 96% of the CAS patients (P = .53). Three CAS patients (11%) and none of the CEA patients had symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage (P = .54). At 90 days, 75% (9/12) of the CEA patients were functionally independent compared with 70% (19/27) in the CAS group (P = 1.0). No deaths were noted in the CEA group compared with five (18.5%) in the CAS arm (P = .30).

Conclusions:

Our study indicates that early recanalization with MT followed by emergent CEA is safe and feasible, which suggests that both CAS and CEA should be considered in the emergent treatment of patients with tandem occlusion.

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