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Intravenous thrombolysis (IVT) has proven effective in the treatment of acute cerebral ischaemic attack in selected cases. In the presence of a carotid artery stenosis, such patients may be candidates for carotid endarterectomy (CEA). Few studies have been made on the safety of CEA performed after IVT. This was a retrospective study. Data including 30 days' follow-up were obtained from medical records and from a vascular registry. A consecutive series of 306 patients were operated on for symptomatic carotid artery stenosis during a 5-year period. Among these, 22 (7%) patients had been treated with IVT for an acute cerebral ischaemic attack prior to CEA and 284 (93%) patients had CEA only. IVT as well as CEA was performed following established guidelines. CEA was performed in median 11 days (25 and 75% percentiles: 7-13 days) after the neurological index event in patients having undergone IVT and 12 days (25 and 75% percentiles: 8-21 days) in patients undergoing CEA only. The 30 days' stroke and death rate was 0% (95% confidence interval (CI): 0-15%) in patients who had IVT before CEA and 2.4% (95% CI: 0.9-4.7%) in patients who underwent CEA only. Our experience indicates that CEA performed after IVT for acute cerebral ischaemic attack is safe, confirming existing but sparse publications. However, our series is small and our study possesses a number of limitations. Thus, our results cannot necessarily be transferred to other units, who instead should perform similar studies, preferably together. Copyright © 2013 European Society for Vascular Surgery. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


L K Rathenborg, L P Jensen, N Baekgaard, T V Schroeder. Carotid endarterectomy after intravenous thrombolysis for acute cerebral ischaemic attack: is it safe? European journal of vascular and endovascular surgery : the official journal of the European Society for Vascular Surgery. 2013 Jun;45(6):573-7

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PMID: 23582885

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