Background: Traumatic and spontaneous dissections of internal carotid arteries (ICA) are rare conditions. So far, these pathologies are primarily treated conservatively, surgical revascularization being an option only after recurrent thromboembolic neurologic episodes or continuous aneurysm growth. Successful endovascular treatment strategies with covered stents have been reported in patients with ICA dissections. However, no long-term results are published so far. Herein, we report our experience of a combined conventional and endovascular repair of ICA dissections under reversed flow and their respective long-term results.
Methods: In a prospective evaluation of clinical and morphologic outcome of 6 patients with carotid artery dissections, 2 patients were treated for continuous aneurysm growth and 4 patients for high-grade ICA stenoses with recurrent thromboembolic episodes during a 6-month follow-up period. A 6-mm polytetrafluoroethylene Hemobahn endoprosthesis was inserted under reversed flow of the internal carotid artery.
Results: No perioperative strokes were observed; one TIA occurred, lasting less than 3 hours; no peripheral cranial nerve injuries or deaths were observed. No occlusions, hemodynamically significant stenosis, or recurrent neurologic symptoms were seen during follow-up, which ranged from 6 to 54 months (mean, 38.3 months).
Conclusion: Open endovascular repair of the ICA of symptomatic patients with dissections with a 6-mm covered endoprosthesis is a safe alternative to conventional surgery, with excellent long-term patency.