Transcarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR)

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Norton Healthcare offers a team of providers who are pioneers in the use of a cutting-edge technology called transcarotid artery revascularization (TCAR). We have three hospital facilities designated by Silk Road Medical as TCAR Centers of Excellence.

What Is Transcarotid Artery Revascularization?

Transcarotid artery revascularization (TCAR) is a procedure to treat patients with carotid artery disease who would be at higher risk during open surgery. Carotid artery disease is a condition in which a patient has blockages in one or both of their neck arteries. These arteries are major blood vessels that supply blood to the brain, neck and face.

While any repair of the carotid artery carries some risk of causing a stroke because of the repair itself, TCAR was designed to help minimize that risk by keeping potential stroke-causing fragments away from the brain. Like the open surgery, carotid endarterectomy (CEA), this new procedure involves direct access to the carotid artery, but through a much smaller incision at the neckline just above the clavicle instead of a longer incision on the neck. During the TCAR procedure, a tube inserted into the carotid artery is connected to a system that temporarily directs blood flow away from the brain to protect against dangerous debris reaching the brain during the procedure. Surgeons then filter the blood before returning it to a vein in the groin, and a stent is implanted directly into the carotid artery to stabilize the plaque and prevent future strokes. The entire procedure is performed in less than half the time of CEA — limiting the stress on the heart and significantly lowering the risk of the patient having a stroke or heart attack during the procedure.

Why Choose Norton Healthcare for Your TCAR Procedure?

Norton Audubon Hospital, Norton Brownsboro Hospital and Norton Hospital all were named 2019 TCAR Centers of Excellence for improving carotid artery disease treatment using the TCAR procedure. This distinction recognizes hospitals across the country that have embraced the TCAR procedure and have demonstrated excellent patient outcomes through appropriate patient selection and well-trained and credentialed specialists.

This designation, paired with the expertise of an experienced team of vascular surgeons and neurosurgeons, provides patients access to the latest in technology and capabilities when they need it most.

What Are Some of the Benefits of the TCAR Procedure?

  • Smaller incision and scarring
  • Lowest stroke rate of clinical studies to date
  • Temporary reversal of blood flow to reduce risk of debris entering the brain and creating a procedural stroke
  • Filtering any loose material from the artery to protect against plaque that may come loose during the procedure
  • Minimized procedure times and recovery
  • Implanted stent in the carotid artery protects patients from future stroke risk

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