Carotid endarterectomy in patients aged 75 and over: early results and late outcome

O. Alozairi, R. K. MacKenzie, R. Morgan, Gisu Cooper, J. Engeset, Julie Brittenden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Background: the mean age of patients in the European Carotid Surgery Trial with greater than 70% stenosis was 62 years. With changing demographics older patients are increasingly being referred for carotid endarterectomy (CEA).

Objectives: to assess the complications and survival (stroke-free and overall) of patients over the age of 75 undergoing CEA.

Methods: analysis of a database, clinical records and cause of death of patients undergoing CEA in a single regional unit over a 7 year period (1/4/1993 until 1/4/2000), with follow-up to April 2002. The rates of further neurological events were obtained from the Scottish Morbidity Record 1 (SMR 1) of hospital discharges. Patients referred from outside the region were excluded. Differences between groups were assessed by the Chi-squared test, with Yates correction and log-rank tests.

Results: of the 235 patients undergoing CEAs, 55 (23%) were 75 years or older. The post-operative neurological complication rate was 1.7% in the under 75's and 5.4% in the older group (p < 0.05). The 30 day mortality was 1.1 % (two patients) and 1.8% (one patient) respectively. The Kaplan-Meier estimated survival for the under 75's and older were 93 and 75% at 3 years and 80 and 59% at 5 years respectively (p < 0.001). The Kaplan-Meier estimated neurological event-free 5 year survival for the under 75's and older patients were 96 and 82% respectively (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: CEA in patients aged 75 years and over is associated with a significantly increased risk of stroke and death. CEA may not benefit elderly patients with a reduced life expectancy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-249
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • carotid disease
  • age
  • post-operative outcome
  • survival


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