Blunt traumatic dissection of the internal carotid artery treated by balloon occlusion

A. G. Nordestgaard*, G. H. White, S. Cobb, M. Mehringer, S. E. Wilson

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)


    An extensive traumatic intimal dissection of the internal carotid artery was successfully managed by permanent occlusion of the vessel with percutaneously-placed, inflatable balloons in a young patient who had suffered transient ischemic neurological attacks despite anticoagulation. This technique has not been previously reported for treatment of dissection. Review of 34 published reports of symptomatic intimal dissection associated with non-penetrating trauma to the head and neck revealed that most did not have a direct injury to the carotid region and that development of symptoms was often delayed. Only 50% of these patients had onset of neurological symptoms within six hours of the episode of trauma, while 33% remained asymptomatic for more than one week before complications occurred. In 15 patients who were treated surgically, only nine (60%) achieved full recovery. Operative repair was considered unduly hazardous in our patient because of extension of the spiral dissection to the base of the skull. Successful use of percutaneous balloon occlusion of the carotid in this patient suggests that this technique should be considered a worthy alternative for management of selected cases.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)610-615
    Number of pages6
    JournalAnnals of vascular surgery
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 1987


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