Carotid Artery Stenting

A person with a narrowed carotid artery is at risk for stroke or a mini-stroke, sometimes called a TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack). These “brain attacks” may cause permanent weakness, speech difficulty and memory problems.

Your carotid arteries are located on each side of your neck and extend from your aorta in your chest to the base of your skull. These arteries supply blood to your brain. As plaque builds up, the arteries narrow and stiffen, a condition called hardening of the arteries, or atherosclerosis. Plaque build-up also reduces blood flow in the carotid artery, causing carotid artery disease.

If you have a blocked carotid artery, your physician may recommend that you have a stent inserted as an alternative to surgical removal of the plaque (carotid endarterectomy). A stent is a slender, metal-mesh tube which expands inside your carotid artery and increases blood flow to areas blocked by plaque. During the carotid artery stenting procedure, your physician first performs angioplasty.

During angioplasty, a catheter with an attached balloon is inserted and inflated in the narrowed part of the artery to flatten the plaque and open the artery. Another catheter guides a compressed stent to the same place in the artery. The stent expands to fit the artery. It then permanently remains in your carotid artery.

Although some physicians perform the procedure under general anesthesia, it is generally done only with a local anesthetic while the patient is awake and alert.

To help prevent carotid artery disease, consider making the following changes in your lifestyle:
• eat foods low in saturated fat, cholesterol and calories
• exercise regularly
• get to and maintain your ideal body weight
• if you smoke, quit
• get regular cholesterol checkups and follow your physician’s guide for reducing cholesterol.

Noninvasive ultrasounds can be performed on at-risk individuals to help identify plaque build-up in the carotid arteries. The professionals at Advanced Mobile Diagnostics have been providing these services for patients in central Illinois for more than 20 years


* Disclaimer: The information contained in this site is for informational purposes only. It does not take the place of, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for individual medical advice, diagnosis or treatment from your physician.

  • Other Vascular

  • Keywords


    A minimally invasive procedure during which a catheter with an attached balloon is inserted and inflated in the narrowed part of the artery to flatten the plaque and open the artery.


    A tiny flexible tube threaded through the vein or artery.

    Carotid Artery Disease

    The buildup of plaque or blood clots in the carotid arteries. If a clot or plaque break free and travel to the brain, it can result in a stroke.


    During this minimally invasive procedure, the physician removes fatty deposits within one or both carotid arteries.


    The sticky material consisting of cholesterol, white blood cells, fat, calcium and other substances.


    When the carotid artery becomes blocked again following stenting.


    A flexible metal-mesh tube.

    Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA)

    Also known as a mini-stroke, this is when a clot or plaque blocks a tiny artery in the brain.