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Carotid Stenting in Patients With High Risk Versus Standard Risk for Open Carotid Endarterectomy (REAL-1 Trial)

      Carotid stenting (CAS) has been mainly offered to those patients considered at “high risk” for open carotid endarterectomy based on available data from large randomized clinical trials. However, several recent studies have called medical “high risk” into question for CAS indication. The REAL-1 trial evaluated the safety and perioperative and long-term effectiveness in patients with significant carotid artery stenosis with “high-risk” criteria treated with CAS and proximal protection device (MOMA) compared with those with standard surgical-risk features. This nonrandomized double-arm registry included 125 patients (40% symptomatic), 71 (56%) with “standard-risk” and 54 (44%) with “high-risk” criteria. The primary end point was the cumulative incidence of any major adverse event, a composite of stroke, myocardial infarction, and death within 30 days after the intervention or ipsilateral stroke after 30 days and up to 4 years. There was no significant difference in primary end point rate at 30 days between patients at “standard risk” and those with “high risk” (1.4% vs 1.9% respectively; hazard ratio for “standard risk” 1.1; 95% CI 0.8 to 1.2, p = 0.77) nor estimated 4-year rate of ipsilateral stroke (1.3% vs 1.8%; hazard ratio for “standard risk” 1.05, 95% CI 0.86 to 1.14, p = 0.9). In conclusion, 4-year postprocedure results demonstrated that CAS with proximal device (MOMA) is safe and effective for patients with and without “high-risk” for carotid endarterectomy.
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