TCAR: An Alternative to a Carotid Endarterectomy

Karen McNew McGuire's picture
By Karen McNew McGuire on October 4, 2018

Josh Adams, M.D., of the Carilion Clinic Aortic Center, is the only aortic endovascular surgeon in our region who uses the most advanced treatment option for carotid artery disease.
“It is a novel procedure that combines the best of endovascular treatment for carotid artery disease with an open surgical approach but a much more minimally invasive surgical approach than the standard endarterectomy,” explained Dr. Adams.
Trans carotid artery revascularization, also called TCAR, allows the reversal of blood flow, away from the brain, prior to stent placement.
“Basically, most strokes occur because a piece of the plaque that is located in the carotid internal artery breaks free and goes to the brain and blocks off the blood flow to a specific part of the brain,” said Dr. Adams. “What we are able to do with TCAR is stabilize that plaque using a stent and prevent a piece of that plaque from breaking free.”
Reversing the flow of blood is an added safeguard to keep dangerous plaque from ever making it to the brain and therefore lowers the risk for having a stroke during the procedure.
A patient can be diagnosed and evaluated for TCAR through a CT scan.
“The scan gives us a good road map of the anatomy and whether they are a good candidate for TCAR,” noted Dr. Adams. “Patients generally spend one night in the hospital after surgery and then go home to resume their normal activity the next day.”
Carilion Clinic’s Aortic Center, leading the way with the safest and least invasive option for treating carotid artery disease.