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Stroke remains a significant contributor to morbidity and mortality in developed countries. Carotid artery stenosis is a major cause of stroke. Advances in medical therapy, surgical technique and endovascular maturation has resulted in options for the treatment of carotid stenosis. Here, we present a review of carotid artery stenting and carotid endarterectomy as it applies to trials comparing and contrasting the two treatment options. We also explore the intricacies surrounding reimbursement of these treatment strategies in the USA.