Carotid Endarterectomy

Carotid arteries are large blood vessels in your neck responsible for supplying oxygen-rich blood to your brain. When blockages restrict blood flow, it can cause serious complications such as stroke. As one of the most comprehensive endovascular programs in North Carolina, our surgeons are skilled in delivering life-saving treatments such as carotid endartererctomy. 

Carotid Endarterectomy at Wake Forest Baptist Health 

Carotid endarterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove blockages from your carotid artery. Although this may sound complex, it is a common treatment used to treat for carotid artery disease. Our board-certified, fellowship-trained surgeons have years of experience performing this procedure. 

Your may benefit from carotid endarterectomy if you have experienced: 

  • Significant (50 to 70 percent) narrowing in your carotid artery; and 
  • Stroke, or one or more transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), also called mini-strokes, in the past 6 months 

Surgery isn’t for everyone. Your doctor will let you know if carotid endarterectomy is right for your condition.  

Carotid Artery Disease Treatment in North Carolina 

You have two carotid arteries, one on each side of your neck. Over time, buildup of a fatty substance called plaque can interfere with normal blood flow. If a piece of plaque breaks away, it can get stuck in the smaller arteries of your brain, causing a stroke. 

At Wake Forest Baptist Health, our team of vascular surgeons performs carotid endarterectomy in a dedicated endovascular operating room. Here’s what you can expect during the procedure: 

  1. Our specially trained anesthesiologists give you medicine to help you relax. 
  2. We make a small incision in your neck just below the level of the jaw, exposing your carotid artery. 
  3. We may reroute blood flow using a special tube inserted into your blood vessel above and below the surgical area. 
  4. We open the artery and remove the plaque, often in one piece. 
  5. We may take a vein from your leg and sew it on to your carotid artery (also known as grafting) to make it stronger. 
  6. When your procedure is complete, we remove the shunt and close your incisions with stitches.   

Your procedure will take about an hour. After surgery, you will recuperate in an intensive care unit (ICU) dedicated to Heart & Vascular Center patients. Here, your care is led nurses and nurse practitioners with specialized training in vascular disease.  

Contact Us 

Request an appointment online. Or, for more information, please call: 

  • 336-716-WAKE or 
  • 888-716-WAKE (toll-free) 

 

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Last Updated: 10-17-2014
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Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.