In the United States alone, there are 427,000 new diagnoses of carotid artery disease every year, and up to 3% of people over the age of 65 experience this condition. Carotid artery disease is a buildup of plaque in the carotid arteries, and if left untreated, these arteries will narrow and slow down blood flow to the brain. If blood flow stops or plaque fragments travel to the brain, it can cause a stroke.
Historically, severe cases of this disease were treated with carotid endarterectomy, an open surgery. However, St. Joseph Health is the first in the Brazos Valley to perform TransCarotid Artery Revascularization, a minimally invasive and safer alternative for lowering the risk of stroke.