Cranial nerve paralysis following carotid endarterectomy.
During the past seven years 347 patients have been entered into a data bank at the Duke University Medical Center for evaluation of transient neurologic ischemia. One hundred fifty eight of these patients had carotid endarterectomies of whom 24 (15.1%) developed 26 (16.4%) peripheral cranial nerve palsies. Injury to the peripheral portion of the hypoglossal nerve was noted in 13 patients, to the cervical branch of the facial nerve in five and to the recurrent laryngeal nerve branch of the vagus in eight. Complete recovery of nerve function usually occurred within four months but residual deficit was present at one year in two patients with facial nerve and four with hypoglossal nerve involvement. Even though these complications of carotid endarterectomy are generally benign and transient, the frequency of occurrence can be reduced if careful attention is given to anatomic localization of the cranial nerves during surgery.
- Copyright © 1984 by American Heart Association