newsletter

Fall 2016
Stroke Prevention: Inside And Out
Minimally Invasive And Open Approaches Can Restore Blood Flow And Reduce The Risk Of Stroke

Pictured: Endovascular devices like the Trevo Retriever can remove clots during ischemic stroke.

More than 795,000 people in the United States will suffer a stroke this year. Of those, an estimated 85% will have an ischemic stroke, in which blood flow to the brain is blocked due to a narrowing of the carotid arteries (carotid artery stenosis) or an artery inside the brain (intracranial stenosis). This blockage could be caused by plaque or a malformation.

Minimally invasive, endovascular and traditional open surgery techniques are often used to open blocked or narrowed arteries in an effort to prevent strokes. A carotid endarterectomy procedure involves clearing the carotid artery by making an incision in the neck to repair the artery. This procedure usually involves a two-day hospital stay.

Cerebral artery bypass surgery is used to prevent strokes by restoring blood flow to the brain. The purpose is to reroute blood around a blocked or damaged artery by connecting a blood vessel outside the brain to a vessel inside the brain. This procedure is used to help patients with carotid artery stenosis, intracranial stenosis, Moyamoya disease, aneurysms and skull base tumors. Recovery time can be two to four weeks.

For some patients, an endovascular stent is an option to open an artery without open surgery. Like most endovascular procedures, it involves inserting a catheter through a small puncture in the groin and threading a balloon and stent to the damaged artery. The balloon is inflated to open the artery. The stent stays in place to keep the artery clear. Patients are often able to go home on the same day as the procedure.

For patients who have suffered a stroke, endovascular options are available to provide immediate treatment, restore blood flow and minimize permanent damage. Devices such as the Penumbra Stroke System, Trevo retriever and Solitaire stent retriever are designed to remove blood clots and open blocked arteries during acute ischemic strokes.

“Our practice has a history of spearheading cerebrovascular innovation in this region,” said neurosurgeon Joe Bernard, MD. “We are dedicated to discovering new advancements that provide patients with even better treatment options for stroke care and prevention.”

Learn more about our cerebrovascular services by calling 800-344-6716.

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