Transcarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR) Specialist

Vascular Associates of San Diego

Vein Specialists & Vascular Specialists located in San Diego County, La Mesa, CA

As leading experts in vascular treatments, the highly skilled team at Vascular Associates of San Diego in La Mesa, California, serving all of San Diego County, offers cutting-edge procedures like transcarotid artery revascularization (TCAR) with stenting. The TCAR procedure is less invasive than other treatments for carotid artery disease, and it safely restores normal blood flow through the artery with an exceptionally low risk of complications such as stroke and infection. If you have questions about the TCAR procedure, don’t wait to call the office or schedule an appointment through the online booking system.

Transcarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR) Q & A

What is transcarotid artery revascularization (TCAR)?

TCAR is an innovative procedure to remove plaque from the carotid artery using the Enroute® Transcarotid Stent System and the Enroute® Transcarotid Neuroprotection System.

During a TCAR procedure, your provider uses the stent system to temporarily reverse the flow of blood in the clogged carotid artery and implant a stent. Normally, your carotid arteries carry oxygen-rich blood into your brain.

The stent system redirects blood away from the brain and into a tube. Meanwhile, your brain still receives a healthy supply of blood through other arteries.

The tube carries the blood outside your body and through the neuroprotection system. This system filters the blood and captures pieces of plaque that break free during stenting. A second tube carries the blood back to your body, returning it to a vein in your leg.

Reversing the flow of blood allows your provider to insert the stent, open the blockage, and restore normal circulation in the carotid artery without the risk of a stroke.  

When do I need a TCAR procedure?

The TCAR procedure treats carotid artery disease. This condition occurs when cholesterol accumulates in the carotid artery, causing fatty plaque called atherosclerosis.

Over time, plaque gets progressively larger, narrowing the artery and blocking blood flow to your brain. Without treatment, the blockage can get large enough to cause a stroke. The plaque can also rupture, creating a blood clot that also results in a stroke.

Anyone with carotid artery disease may be a good candidate for TCAR and stenting. TCAR is also the best option for high-risk patients who can’t have a carotid endarterectomy.

What happens during a TCAR procedure?

Your provider at Vascular Associates of San Diego makes a small incision in the carotid artery near your collarbone. Then they insert a sheath into the carotid artery.

The sheath serves two purposes: It reverses blood flow, carrying blood into the external tube. Your provider also deploys a mesh stent through the sheath and into the carotid artery.

The stent expands over the blockage, effectively opening the artery. Then it stays in the artery to maintain normal blood flow. After the stent is in place, your provider removes the sheath and blood flow goes back to normal.

If you have any questions about the health of your blood vessels or you’d like to learn more about TCAR and stenting, call Vascular Associates of San Diego or schedule an appointment online.