Urgent endovascular treatment of acute symptomatic occlusion of the cervical internal carotid artery

J Neurosurg. 2003 Dec;99(6):972-7. doi: 10.3171/jns.2003.99.6.0972.


Object: The prognosis of patients with acute symptomatic cervical internal carotid artery (ICA) occlusion is generally considered to be poor. Traditionally, such patients are not considered eligible for urgent thrombolytic/endovascular treatment. Since 1998, an aggressive therapeutic approach with endovascular treatment has been adopted at the authors' institution. In this report they assess whether aggressive treatment of ICA occlusion is appropriate.

Methods: The clinical characteristics and outcome of six consecutive patients treated urgently with an endovascular approach between 1998 and 2001 are reviewed and summarized. Recanalization was accomplished in all patients. At a mean follow-up period of 8 months (range 2-14 months), five of six patients had good or excellent outcomes (modified Rankin Scale [mRS] Score 0-1) and one had a poor outcome (mRS Score 4).

Conclusions: With recent advancements in thrombolytic and endovascular treatments, an aggressive endovascular approach in patients with acute symptomatic cervical ICA occlusion may be successful. Further clinical data are required to determine the optimal endovascular approach in these patients.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Angioplasty*
  • Carotid Artery, Internal / surgery*
  • Carotid Stenosis / therapy*
  • Female
  • Fibrinolytic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Recovery of Function
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thrombolytic Therapy*
  • Time Factors
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator / therapeutic use*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Fibrinolytic Agents
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator