Carotid Artery Disease
The carotid arteries are the two main arteries that supply blood to the brain.
Transient Ischaemic Attacks or TIA's
A proportion of strokes and "mini-strokes" are caused by narrowing of one of these important vessels. "Mini-strokes" are correctly known as Transient Ischaemic Attacks or TIA's.
Treatment of Transient Ischaemic Attacks
During investigations undertaken when someone suffers a stroke or TIA, the carotid arteries are imaged using ultrasound and/or CT scans. If a significant narrowing is found in the carotid arteries, and the symptoms can be attributed to this, then it may be appropriate to operate on the vessels.
This procedure is called a carotid endarterectomy, during with the narrowing is removed, and should be performed as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms as this is when the benefit of the operation is the greatest.