At TriHealth, we use a procedure called stenting, which involves the placement of a tiny tube into your carotid artery, to hold it open. Most stents are made of metal or plastic mesh-like material, while some are made of fabric. After the stent is inserted into your artery, it then expands, allowing more blood to flow in areas blocked by plaque.
This procedure is often performed because plaque – made up of cholesterol, calcium and fibrous tissue – builds up in the arteries as you age.
This plaque buildup causes your arteries to narrow and stiffen. Eventually the buildup may reduce blood flow through your arteries or cause blood clots or pieces of plaque to break free and get lodged into parts of the arteries, thus blocking blood flow to the brain. If blow flow to the brain is blocked, it can cause ischemic stroke, resulting in brain damage or death.
Stents are commonly used to treat the following vascular conditions:
An aortic aneurysm occurs when the large blood vessel (aorta), which supplies blood to the abdomen, pelvis and legs, becomes too large or balloons outward.
Carotid artery disease is a condition in which the major arteries of the neck (carotid arteries), which provide the pain blood supply to the brain, become narrowed or blocked.
Peripheral vascular disease, is a condition of the blood vessels that leads to narrowing and hardening of the arteries that supply the legs and feet.