Background The feasibility, safety and effectiveness of emergency carotid artery stenting (eCAS) in patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS) due to proximal internal carotid artery (ICA) stenosis or occlusion are still controversial. In this study we analyzed our experience with eCAS in patients with AIS.
Methods Twenty-two eCAS procedures for proximal ICA stenosis or occlusion were performed in 22 patients at our institution between January 2011 and November 2013. The mean time from stroke symptom onset to presentation was 204 min (range 50–630 min) and the mean initial score on the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) was 12.55 (range 5–23). Ten patients had total occlusion of the proximal ICA and the remaining 12 patients had near total occlusion or severe stenosis (mean degree 90.7%, range 80–100%). Eleven patients also had tandem occlusion on the more distal intracranial arteries.
Results Successful stent insertion was achieved in all patients and additional thrombectomy using a Solitaire stent or Penumbra aspiration catheter achieved a Thrombolysis In Cerebral Infarction grade of more than 2a in all patients with distal tandem occlusion. Procedure-related complications occurred in one patient (cerebral hyperperfusion syndrome) who recovered successfully. The mean NIHSS score at discharge was 3.55 (range 0–18). The mean modified Rankin Scale score at 3 months was 1±1.67 (range 0–6).
Conclusions eCAS in patients with AIS due to proximal ICA stenosis or occlusion appears to be a technically feasible and effective method for achieving good clinical outcomes.
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