Prevention of stroke


Why a neck vessel Ecodoppler

Ultrasound imaging is a noninvasive medical test that helps physicians to detect and treat potentially highly disabling diseases .

Doppler ultrasound of the neck vessels or Doppler ultrasound of both carotid arteries , which are on each side of the neck and carry blood from the heart to the brain , provides detailed images of these vessels.

A Color Doppler Ultrasound study is part of a routine examination , and today , basic and fundamental carótidas.También arteries extended it to the lower limbs.

The examination of the carotid arteries is often performed to detect narrowing or stenosis of carotid disease that substantially increases the risk of stroke (CVA / STROKE ) . Especially in patients with high cholesterol , high triglycerides, diabetes and obesity.

The main goal of this study is to look at patients obstruction or narrowing of the carotid arteries (plaques or atheromas ) which , when present , may increase the risk of suffering a STROKE . Once diagnosed, you can start early preventive treatment .

Also be performed if a patient has high blood pressure (hypertension ) or carotid artery murmur , an abnormal sound in the neck that is detected by clinical examination with stethoscope in the doctor's family .

Other risk factors that require an ultrasound examination of the carotid artery are:

▪ Elderly

▪ diabetes

▪ high cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood.

▪ family history of stroke / STROKE or coronary disease (unstable angina , acute myocardial infarction)

Carotid Artery Doppler ultrasound is also performed to :

▪ detect early thickening of the inner layers of the carotid arteries and arteries of the lower limbs ( previous findings to the clinical manifestation of atherosclerosis ) and other obstructive diseases of the vessels.

▪ detect atherosclerotic plaques early diagnosis which radically change the strategy and intensity of drug treatment of dyslipidemia (high cholesterol) to decrease the risk of stroke.

▪ locate a hematoma , an accumulation of clotted blood can reduce and eventually stop blood flow .

▪ detect carotid artery dissection , a tear between the layers of the arterial wall which can cause obstruction of blood flow or a weakening of the wall of the artery .

▪ monitor the status of the carotid artery after surgery to restore normal blood flow

▪ verify the position of a stent placed to maintain blood flow in the carotid artery .

Doppler ultrasound images can help the physician to diagnose and evaluate :

▪ narrowing of vessels (which may be caused by plaque ) .

▪ obstructions in blood flow ( such as clots) .

▪ tumors and congenital malformation .

What are the benefits and risks?


▪ Ultrasound scanning is noninvasive ( no needles or injections ) and is not painful .

▪ Ultrasound is a method that is widely available, easy to use and less expensive than other imaging methods .

▪ Ultrasound imaging uses no ionizing radiation (X-rays ) .

▪ Ultrasound scanning gives a clear picture of soft tissues that do not show up well on x-ray images

▪ If an examination of the carotid artery by ultrasound shows a narrowing of one or both carotid arteries , treatment can be performed to restore the unobstructed blood flow to the brain. This will prevent many strokes.


▪ There are no known harmful effects on humans with regard to ultrasound.

▪ In almost 50 years of experience, carotid artery ultrasound has proven to be a risk-free procedure .

What are the risk factors for carotid disease have ?

They are the same as for coronary artery disease .
1.Smoking .
3.Dieta fat and cholesterol.
4.Obesidad .
5.Hipertensión pressure.
6.Diabetes .
7.Stress uncontrolled and anguish.
8.Altos LDL cholesterol (bad) cholesterol and low HDL (good).

What are the symptoms of Carotid Artery Disease ?

The involvement of atherosclerosis in the whole organism is asymptomatic . When a person has clinical manifestation Carotid artery disease often have what is called a transient ischemic attack . It is a sign that warns of a future stroke ( CVA or Stroke) , and approximately 25 % of patients with transient cerebral ischemia develop a brain attack ( stroke ) in the next two years ( 1 in 4 patients , a figure nothing negligible to consider)

Symptoms of transient cerebral ischemia are as follows:
1.Debilidad , numbness or tingling in the middle of the body.
2.Confusión .
3.Trastornos in the articulation of the word.
4.Dificultad in understanding the word.
5.Inestabilidad or loss of coordination (vertigo ) .
Severe headache 6.Dolor
7.Pérdida partial vision or blindness.

 Transient cerebral ischemia can also cause a variety of visual symptoms , such as:

Double 1.Overview .
Abnormal eye 2.Movimientos .
3.Visión blurred .
4.A gray or hazy vision field of view.

Anyone who has experienced these symptoms urgently should visit your doctor to know if you have had transient cerebral ischemia and whether it is due to carotid disease .

What is the Treatment for Carotid Artery Disease ?

Risk factors for Carotid artery disease are similar to those of Coronary artery disease , therefore the change of lifestyle is the same for both diseases. This includes the following :
1.Abandonar smoking, smoking is a major cause of coronary heart disease and cardiac arrest , both men and women. The centers for prevention and control of cardiovascular diseases also suggest that the average smoker dies almost seven years before a nonsmoker.
2.Keep a regular program of exercise , the risk of not exercising has been compared to the risk of smoking a pack of cigarettes per day.
3.Reducir cholesterol levels . One strategy to reduce cholesterol levels is to make a heart-healthy diet that includes little fat and oils. Saturated fats raise cholesterol levels , in addition to dietary changes people are encouraged to exercise it regularly . If these strategies do not reduce cholesterol levels your doctor should prescribe drugs (which have been shown to reduce cholesterol levels substantially and thus the risk of stroke and myocardial infarction).
4.Control diabetes. People with diabetes are more likely to develop diseases related to the arteries of the heart, brain, kidney and other body rest , preventative care is crucial for maintaining health and cardiac function in diabetics.
5.Control of hypertension . People with high blood pressure are at increased risk or cardiovascular disease, mainly coronary heart disease. Hypertension is also the most common risk factor for stroke. Hypertension can be controlled through anti hypertensive medications or by appropriate low-salt diets and doing exercise daily . People should be encouraged to do regular consultations with the doctor.
6.Manejo stress . The stress can lead to high-risk situations as much as smoking , high blood pressure and physical inactivity. In addition , chronic stress can be a direct contributor to poor heart health because it produces increase in blood pressure that may become permanent .

Along with the change of lifestyle that is essential medications are prescribed to reduce the risk of stroke , these medications include daily doses of aspirin or other anticoagulants or antiplatelet drugs that prevent blood clots in the arteries.

When tested severe obstruction to the flow of blood in the carotid arteries using invasive treatment . Routine treatment for many years is the surgical carotid endarterectomy ie , this is a treatment that is performed under general anesthesia requiring surgical incision.

In recent years started to perform angioplasty at the level of the carotid arteries has been rapid progress in technology and which at the present time almost equal the results of the surgery. Angioplasty is a procedure that does not require general anesthesia or surgical incisions, length of stay is 24 hours . has high success rate and has elective indication in specific cases on collars that have been operated upon for any reason or who have received radiation treatment or high obstructions Carotid arteries are inaccessible or more difficult in the art for the surgeon and restenosis after surgery.

Can carotid disease be prevented?

Strategies to prevent Carotid artery disease include changes in lifestyle already mentioned, and for patients at high risk of developing the disease doctors should conduct regular color Doppler Carotid arteries as part of the screening ( check ) regular examination of patients , from age 50, or earlier, if present risk factors discussed earlier .

These studies are all covered by private insurance.

Dr. Raul Balanzino Maggi .

Medical Phlebologist and Linfologo .