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  3. Vascular and Endovascular Surgery

Vascular and Endovascular Surgery

About Our Program

Ochsner LSU Health vascular and endovascular surgeons treat blood vessel and vascular diseases that block, narrow or enlarge arteries affecting blood circulation to the legs, abdomen, kidneys, intestines, arms and neck. In other words, we manage arteries and veins in every part of the body except the brain and the heart. We do this by providing medical treatment, as well as endovascular and open surgical procedures.

Endovascular describes a minimally invasive approach. We also perform traditional open vascular surgery, which is more invasive and involves incisions.

Although our doctors are surgeons, we are often called vascular specialists because we also treat many patients who don’t require surgery. Some vascular conditions can be managed with proper diet, exercise and medication. We treat each patient individually and make sure you know and understand all of your treatment options. If invasive therapy is required, the large majority of our patients are treated with minimally invasive endovascular methods. Surgical intervention is reserved for cases where there is a clear need/advantage for the patient.

Our Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery helps manage and treat various conditions that affect the body’s blood vessels. Our advanced operating suite allows us to offer both traditional open surgical procedures and minimally invasive surgery, which involves smaller incisions and less pain.

Some of the many conditions we treat include:

  • Aortic dissection, a leak in the aorta, the body’s largest blood vessel
  • Aneurysms
  • Blood clots
  • Carotid artery stenosis, a narrowing of the blood vessels that carry blood to the head
  • Complex abdominal and thoracic aortic aneurysms (bulges in the aorta)
  • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT), clots that can form in the arms and legs
  • Infected aortic grafts
  • IVC filter placement and removal
  • Median arcuate ligament syndrome, which involves a ligament pressing on a blood vessel in the abdomen
  • Mesenteric artery stenosis/occlusion, a narrowing or blockage of blood vessels that bring blood to your intestines
  • Nutcracker syndrome, compression of the blood vessel that brings blood away from your kidney
  • Peripheral artery stenosis/occlusion, a narrowing or blockage of blood vessels in your arms or legs
  • Renal artery stenosis, a narrowing of the blood vessels that bring blood to the kidneys
  • Ruptured aortic aneurysms, leaks in the aorta that can lead to severe internal bleeding or death without treatment
  • Stroke
  • Thoracic outlet syndrome, compression of blood vessels just below the neck
  • Varicose veins
  • Vascular infections
  • Vascular trauma

Risk Factors

Risk factors for vascular disease include:

  • A history of heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Physical inactivity
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Smoking
  • Older age

If you are a high risk, you are encouraged to schedule an appointment with an Ochsner vascular surgeon.

Treatment Options

Comprehensive vascular medical evaluation, including risk-factor assessment and non-operative treatment including:

  • Medical / Pharmaceutical
  • Exercise
  • Wound Care (multi-disciplinary)
  • Endovascular Procedures
  • Surgical Procedures

TransCarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR)

Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport is pioneering the use of a breakthrough technology called TransCarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR) to treat patients with carotid artery disease who are at risk for open surgery. While any repair of the carotid artery carries some risk of causing a stroke because of the repair itself, TCAR was designed to help minimize that risk by keeping potential stroke causing fragments away from the brain.

Like the open surgery, carotid endarterectomy (CEA), this new procedure involves direct access to the carotid artery, but through a much smaller incision at the neckline just above the clavicle instead of a longer incision on the neck. During the TCAR procedure, a tube inserted into the carotid artery is connected to a system that temporarily directs blood flow away from the brain to protect against dangerous debris from reaching the brain during the procedure. Surgeons then filter the blood before returning it to a vein in the groin, and a stent is implanted directly into the carotid artery to stabilize the plaque and prevent future strokes. The entire procedure is performed in less than half the time of CEA – limiting the stress on the heart and significantly cutting the risk of the patient having a stroke or heart attack during the procedure.

Patients who undergo the TCAR procedure recover quickly (typically spending just one night in the hospital) and almost always go home the next day to return to full and productive lives with less pain, smaller scars and a reduced risk of future strokes.

Your physician may recommend the TCAR procedure if you’ve been diagnosed with carotid artery disease and are not a suitable candidate for CEA. This may depend on your age or other existing medical conditions. For more information about TCAR, call us to schedule a consultation with one of our vascular surgeons.

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