Carotid Artery Disease

Vascular arterial disease is commonly referred to as carotid artery stenosis.  Stenosis refers to narrowing of the arteries.  When the main arteries that supply the blood to the brain are blocked, oxygen cannot get to the brain and tissue death can lead to an ischemic stroke (this is the most common form of stroke and is caused by a blood clot).

Symptoms of carotid artery disease

  • Often, people have no symptoms at all.
  • Your health care provider may hear an abnormal sound, called a bruit, when listening to the arteries in your neck with a stethoscope.
  • A simple, painless test called an ultrasound can detect stenosis.
  • Symptoms when present are a medical emergency and include:
    • sudden localized weakness or numbness on one side of the body.
    • difficulty or inability to speak or new slurred speech.
    • new onset of difficulty with balance.
    • sudden loss of vision.
      Call 911 if these symptoms are present in you or a loved one now!

Associated risk

  • Stroke
  • Death

For more information

Call American Stroke Association at 1-888-4-STROKE.  

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