TransCarotidArtery Revasculartion (TCAR) is an advanced technique designed for high risk patients whose carotid arteries are blocked, and who are unable to tolerate a surgical endarterectomy. With traditional carotid endarterectomy, surgery is performed to remove plaque from the artery that supplies blood to the brain.
TCAR offers a new approach for patients who are too high risk for this traditional surgical procedure.
Although this is a complex procedure, the minimally-invasive approach reduces the risk of stroke, complications, and recovery time.
During TCAR, the vascular surgeons at Deborah® insert a tube into the carotid artery reversing the blood flow from the brain. During the process any plaque that is captured is filtered out, and the filtered blood is sent back to the patient through the vein in the groin. Then the surgeons can clear out the plaque and place a stent in the carotid artery to prop it open, after which the blood flow is reversed back to the brain again.
The entire procedure usually takes less than an hour. Patients can be either asleep or awake during the TCAR procedure and patients are typically held overnight for observation.
TCAR has a very low procedural stroke rate. It is also less invasive than open surgery, so there’s less chance for surgical complications like heart attacks, infection and nerve injury. TCAR patients also recover quickly and almost always go home the next day with less pain and smaller scars.
TCAR is recommended for patients who are considered high risk for traditional surgery due to age, anatomic issues and other medical conditions. A physician will determine if the TCAR procedure is right for a patient on a case-by-case basis based on his/her medical history and workup.
Deborah Heart and Lung Center’s vascular surgery team is one of a very select group of hospitals in the region capable of doing this highly-specialized surgical procedure.
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