About Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Tests for Silent Neck Artery Narrowing to Curb Stroke Risk: Waste of Resources

by Kathy Jones on September 7, 2012 at 7:39 PM
Font : A-A+

 Tests for Silent Neck Artery Narrowing to Curb Stroke Risk: Waste of Resources

A new study published in the Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery reveals that the tests conducted to screen for "silent" neck artery narrowing leads to a number of unnecessary and costly surgical procedures and has no major impact on reducing the number of deaths due to strokes.

In 2-6% of European men aged 60 plus, the major arteries supplying the brain (carotid arteries) are narrowed by 50-99%. This condition, termed carotid stenosis or atherosclerosis, accounts for 10-15% of strokes (data not in paper).

Advertisement

Carotid atherosclerosis is commonest in those with mild peripheral arterial disease in their legs, a condition known as claudication.

In this group the prevalence of silent carotid atherosclerosis is 15%. As they are already under the care of a vascular specialist, they are considered ideal candidates to test for silent carotid atherosclerosis.
Advertisement

But debate rages as to whether to screen for carotid atherosclerosis to stave off a stroke: the Royal College of Physicians does not currently recommend it, but the US Society for Vascular Surgery strongly backs testing in selected groups.

Those found to have severe (70-99%) carotid narrowing on screening are offered surgical treatment (endarterectomy).

But 133 people with claudication would need to be tested to pick up 20 patients eligible for surgery, and this would only prevent a single stroke, at a cost of around £76, 000, say the authors.

If this policy were to be introduced into England and Wales at age 60 for those with mild peripheral arterial disease, it would cost £17.5 million a year, on the basis that around 669 000 would be eligible for an ultrasound scan, 4600 of whom would then require surgery.

But all this effort would still only prevent 231 strokes, even in this high risk group, equivalent to around 0.2% of all 110,000 strokes sustained in 2010, say the authors.

"The hazards of overdiagnosis have recently been highlighted, and perhaps it is time to realise why it has been recommended that we stop testing for asymptomatic carotid atherosclerosis in the UK," they conclude.



Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
What's New on Medindia
Top 9 Reasons Why We Should Practice Kindness
Top 10 Vitamin B12 Foods for Vegetarians - Slideshow
Targeted Screening Program Beneficial for Prostate Cancer Screening
View all
Recommended Reading
News Archive
Date
Category
Advertisement
News Category

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Bell´s Palsy Diet Lifestyle and Heart Disease Mitral Valve Stenosis And Mitral Valve Replacement Congenital Heart Disease Stress and the Gender Divide Stroke Facts Stroke Hyperventilation Aphasia Temporal Arteritis 

Most Popular on Medindia

Color Blindness Calculator Sinopril (2mg) (Lacidipine) Post-Nasal Drip Daily Calorie Requirements Turmeric Powder - Health Benefits, Uses & Side Effects The Essence of Yoga Drug Side Effects Calculator Diaphragmatic Hernia Loram (2 mg) (Lorazepam) Noscaphene (Noscapine)

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2022

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use