Conference Coverage

Redo carotid endarterectomy is more risky than previously estimated



NEW YORK – It is well known that reoperative carotid endarterectomy can be technically challenging because of the scarring left from the initial procedure, but an analysis of a large database presented at a symposium on vascular and endovascular issues sponsored by the Cleveland Clinic Foundation also revealed that the risk of complications, particularly stroke, is greater.

Dr. Jeffrey M. Siracuse, associate professor of surgery and radiology at Boston University

Dr. Jeffrey M. Siracuse

When “redo” carotid endarterectomies were compared with the index primary procedure collected in the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP) database, the odds ratio for stroke was several times greater (odds ratio, 3.71; P = .002) on univariate analysis, reported Jeffrey J. Siracuse, MD, associate professor of surgery and radiology at Boston University.

Previous single-center reports of redo endarterectomies “showed terrific results, really no perioperative stroke or morbidity, but this is older data from a different era,” said Dr. Siracuse, who undertook this study to determine whether “real-world” data would tell a different story.

In this study, 75,943 primary carotid endarterectomies and 140 redo procedures were identified in the ACS NSQIP database and compared. The redo population had a significantly higher incidence of end-stage renal disease (3.6% vs. 1.1%; P = .004), but history of stroke, whether with deficit (20.8% vs. 15.4%) or without (11.5% vs. 9.1%), was numerically higher among those undergoing a primary procedure even though these differences did not reach statistical significance. Baseline demographics and comorbidities were otherwise similar.

Presumably because of the difficulty of recanalizing scarred tissue, the mean procedure time for redos was longer than that for the primary procedures (137 vs. 49 minutes; P less than .001), but there were no significant differences in the rate of surgical site infections (0.7% vs. 0.3%; P = .482), return to the operating room (3.6% vs. 4%; P = .853), or 30-day readmissions (2.1% vs. 6.9%; P = .810) for the redo and index procedures, respectively.

Although perioperative MI rates were higher in the redo group (2.1%) than in the primary endarterectomy group (0.9%), this difference did not reach statistical significance (P = .125). However, a multivariate analysis associated redo carotid endarterectomy procedures with a nearly threefold increase in risk of a composite of major adverse cardiovascular events when compared on a multivariate analysis (OR, 2.76; P = .007), Dr. Siracuse reported.

For the surgeons considering a redo carotid endarterectomy, these data “inform a risk-benefit analysis,” according to Dr. Siracuse, but he also said that redo procedures still should be considered a viable strategy when considered in the context of other options.

Presenting a case he performed just prior to the VEITHsymposium, Dr. Siracuse displayed CT images that showed internal and common carotids with more than 75% stenosis in an 80-year-old women 7 years after a primary carotid endarterectomy. The tight stenoses and the evidence of substantial intra-arterial debris were concerns, but a decision to perform a redo endarterectomy was reached after other options, including stenting, were considered.

“She did great. She went home and has had no more symptoms,” Dr. Siracuse reported. “The point is you still have to take these [potential redo endarterectomies] on a case-by case basis.”

Dr. Siracuse reported he had no financial relationships relevant to this study.

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