Morphological Changes in Carotid Arteries in Stroke Cases
Introduction: Majority of stroke is due to ischemic infarction and occurs in carotid artery territory. The
extra cranial parts of carotid arteries are the common sites for the atherosclerotic plaque formation. Ultrasonography is the first line of investigation for screening of the carotid artery diseases to localize and characterize the plaques. Objective was to study the morphological changes in extra cranial part of carotid arteries in cases of ischemic infarction using Ultrasonography.
Methods: It was an institution based prospective study and convenience sampling method was used. Computed Tomography proven ischemic infarct, lacunar infarction and transient ischemic infarction cases were included in the study.
Results: Fifty four cases were included in the study. Mean of Intimo-medial Complex Thickness was 0.89 mm and 0.88 mm in right and left side respectively. Sixty five percent cases had plaque in extra cranial part of carotid artery. Ninety three percent of plaque was found in and adjacent to the carotid bulb region. Ipsilateral plaque was found in 76% and 65% cases on right and left side respectively. Fifty three percent of cases had soft plaque. Majority of cases had less than 50% narrowing of the lumen diameter in term of cross-sectional area due to plaque. Thirteen (24%) cases had plaque in internal carotid artery.
Conclusions: Carotid ultrasound can be used for screening of the asymptomatic but high-risk cases and following up of the symptomatic cases to plan for necessary management as required.
Keywords: carotid artery, carotid ultrasonography, ischemic infarction, plaque.
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