Risk of Inhospital Stroke or Death Is Associated With Age But Not Sex in Patients Treated With Carotid Endarterectomy for Asymptomatic or Symptomatic Stenosis in Routine Practice: Secondary Data Analysis of the Nationwide German Statutory Quality Assurance Database From 2009 to 2014

J Am Heart Assoc. 2017 Mar 13;6(3):e004764. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.116.004764.


Background: Guideline recommendations on carotid endarterectomy are based predominantly on randomized, controlled trials, in which women or elderly patients are often under-represented. This study analyzed the association of age and sex with the risk of in-hospital stroke or death following carotid endarterectomy under routine conditions in Germany.

Methods and results: Secondary data analysis using the Statutory German Quality Assurance Database on all carotid endarterectomy procedures (n=142 074) performed between 2009 and 2014. Primary outcome was any stroke or death until discharge; secondary outcomes were any in-hospital stroke (alone), and death (alone). Descriptive statistics and multilevel multivariable regression analyses were applied. Patients were predominately male (68%), with mean age 71 years. Carotid stenosis was symptomatic in 40%. Primary outcome occurred in 1.8% of women and 1.9% of men. Multivariable regression analysis revealed that more-advanced age was associated with a higher primary outcome rate (relative risk [RR] per 10-year increase: 1.19; 95% CI, 1.14-1.24). Risk of death (alone) was associated with age (RR, 1.68; 95% CI, 1.54-1.84). Age was associated with the risk of stroke (alone; RR, 1.05; 95% CI, 1.00-1.11). Sex was not associated with primary outcome rate (1.01; 95% CI, 0.93-1.10), nor did it significantly modify the age effect.

Conclusions: This study shows that increasing age, but not sex, is associated with a higher risk of in-hospital stroke or death following carotid endarterectomy under everyday conditions in Germany. Whereas the risk of death (alone) is significantly associated with age, the association between age and the risk of stroke (alone) can be considered of minor importance.

Keywords: aging; carotid artery; sex; stenosis; surgery.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Asymptomatic Diseases
  • Carotid Stenosis / complications*
  • Carotid Stenosis / diagnosis
  • Carotid Stenosis / surgery
  • Cause of Death / trends
  • Endarterectomy, Carotid / methods*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Germany / epidemiology
  • Hospital Mortality / trends
  • Humans
  • Inpatients
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography
  • Male
  • Population Surveillance*
  • Quality Improvement*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment / methods*
  • Risk Factors
  • Stents
  • Stroke / etiology*
  • Stroke / mortality
  • Stroke / prevention & control
  • Time Factors
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Ultrasonography, Doppler, Duplex
  • Ultrasonography, Doppler, Transcranial