"Both therapeutic procedures are effective. Both procedures showed a relatively low rate of serious complications. Surgery is superior concerning some outcomes; stenting seems to have advantages in others," they write. In addition, "aggressive medical treatment of blood lipids, blood pressure and anti-platelets along with lifestyle changes may be as good as or better than either surgery or stenting at stroke and myocardial infarcts prevention."
"The past decades have produced three very effective treatmentsmedical, surgical and interventionalfor individuals with carotid artery disease," they conclude. "The results and complications of each can be improved. We have learned much from the trials and they are a beacon to engender even further improvements. However, care of individual patients will always rest in the hands of a trained experienced doctor on one end of a stethoscope and a patient on the other end. Trials can enlighten that encounter but never replace it."
(Arch Neurol. Published online October 11, 2010. doi:10.1001/archneurol.2010.268. Available pre-embargo to the media at www.jamamedia.org.)
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