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The use of a covered stent in carotid blowout syndrome

| Reprints
April 1, 2011
by Brian McGettigan, MD, William Parkes, MD, Carin Gonsalves, MD, David Eschelman, MD, William Keane, MD, and Maurits S. Boon, MD


Rupture of the extracranial carotid arteries or their major branches is known as carotid blowout syndrome (CBS). CBS is a well-recognized complication of cancer of the head and neck and subsequent radiation therapy. A few treatment modalities are available, including open ligation and different endovascular techniques, but questions regarding both the immediate and delayed complications of these procedures persist. In this case report, we describe the management of acute CBS in a 54-year-old man who had previously been treated for follicular thyroid carcinoma. The patient was hemorrhaging from a pseudoaneurysm of the left common carotid artery. A self-expanding polytetrafluoroethylene (Teflon) -covered stent was successfully deployed endovascularly, and this resulted in cessation of the bleeding and restoration of flow through the vessel. We examine the covered-stent approach to treating acute CBS, and we discuss other treatment approaches that have been described in the literature.

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