Treatment of carotid artery disease is aimed at reducing the risk of stroke and can include medications, lifestyle management, and surgery.
Medications that may be used to manage carotid artery disease include:
- medications to lower blood pressure
- "statin" medications (e.g., lovastatin, pravastatin, simvastatin, atorvastatin*) to lower cholesterol levels
- medications to reduce blood sugar levels
- antiplatelet medications such as acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) or clopidogrel that make platelets in the blood less likely to form a blood clot
Your doctor may also suggest that you eat a healthy diet, stop smoking, exercise, or lose weight to help reduce the risk of stroke. Your doctor and other health care professionals can help you implement lifestyle changes safely.
For some people at a high-risk of having a stroke or those who have symptoms due to carotid artery disease, their doctor may recommend a surgical procedure, such as:
- an endarterectomy, where plaques within the carotid artery are removed
- angioplasty with a stent, where the carotid artery is widened with a small balloon that is inflated at the end of a tube
Following the surgical procedure, a stent (mesh tube) is placed in the artery to keep the carotid artery open.
The best way to help prevent carotid artery stenosis is to manage risk factors. A healthy diet, exercise, and quitting smoking will all help to reduce the risk of developing carotid artery disease, as well as reduce the risk of stroke and heart disease. It is also important for people to control their blood sugar, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure to help reduce the risk of carotid artery disease and stroke.
*All medications have both common (generic) and brand names. The brand name is what a specific manufacturer calls the product (e.g., Tylenol®). The common name is the medical name for the medication (e.g., acetaminophen). A medication may have many brand names, but only one common name. This article lists medications by their common names. For information on a given medication, check our Drug Information database. For more information on brand names, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2017. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/condition/getcondition/Carotid-Artery-Disease