Carotid Endarterectomy versus Carotid Artery Stenting: No Difference in 30-Day Postprocedure Readmission Rates

Ann Vasc Surg. 2015 Oct;29(7):1408-15. doi: 10.1016/j.avsg.2015.05.013. Epub 2015 Jul 11.


Background: In the United States, ischemic stroke is a major cause of morbidity and mortality, precipitated by carotid artery stenosis in 1 of every 5 individuals who suffer a stroke. Carotid endarterectomy (CEA) and carotid artery stenting (CAS) are 2 proven means of intervening on this disease process, with similar patient outcomes. Little is known about the burden of readmission after each of these procedures. We hypothesized that no difference in readmission rates within 30 days would exist for these 2 procedures, in spite of baseline differences that might exist between the 2 patient populations.

Methods: Using the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council database, we identified 4,319 people who underwent CEA (n = 3,640) or CAS (n = 679) in Pennsylvania in 2011. Univariate analyses were performed to compare patient characteristics and outcomes, including reasons for readmission, between patients who underwent CEA and those who underwent CAS. Logistic regression was used to estimate the effect of intervention on 30-day readmission, after controlling for potential confounders. Time to readmission was analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier method.

Results: Patients who underwent CEA and CAS differed in a few notable ways, including age, race, admission type, and comorbid conditions such as congestive heart failure, hemiplegia and paraplegia, and renal disease. The unadjusted rate of 30-day readmission was 9.37% for CEA and 10.75% for CAS (P = 0.26). After controlling for patient and procedure characteristics, differences between 30-day readmission rates were still not statistically significant (odds ratio = 1.13; P = 0.39). Finally, time to readmission was similar for those who underwent CEA and those who underwent CAS (P = 0.19). Complications associated with surgery comprised less than 10% of primary readmission diagnoses for both groups.

Conclusions: Readmission rates after CEA and CAS for carotid artery stenosis are approximately 10%. In spite of differences between patients with carotid stenosis who are selected for endarterectomy and stenting, the choice of procedure does not appear to be associated with different readmission rates or time to readmission, even after controlling for patient characteristics.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Angioplasty / adverse effects*
  • Angioplasty / instrumentation*
  • Carotid Stenosis / diagnosis
  • Carotid Stenosis / therapy*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Databases, Factual
  • Endarterectomy, Carotid / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Patient Readmission*
  • Pennsylvania
  • Postoperative Complications / diagnosis
  • Postoperative Complications / therapy*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Stents*
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult