What if my doctor referred me to a CREST interventionalist for a stent?
Many patients are referred to a specialist for consideration of a specific procedure.
Your primary care doctor, internist, surgeon, cardiologist, or neurologist, may have referred you to this specialist for a carotid artery stent.
That specialist may be participating in this clinical trial which was designed to test the effectiveness of a common operation for carotid stenosis (called carotid endarterectomy) to a study procedure called carotid artery stenting.
Carotid endarterectomy is a common procedure proven effective through several clinical trials in reducing stroke for patients with significant narrowing of their carotid arteries. It is one of the most studied surgical procedures in North America and has been part of clinical practice for more than 40 years. The risks are very low when an experienced, well-qualified surgeon performs the procedure. This procedure is considered the standard of care for carotid stenosis. Only highly qualified surgeons with a very low rate of complications are selected to participate in CREST.
Carotid artery stenting is a relatively new procedure that is less invasive than carotid endarterectomy. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently approved it for patients who are considered too high-risk for the surgical procedure. Only highly qualified interventionalists with a very low rate of complications are selected to participate in CREST.
Stenting has not yet been approved for patients who are considered a low to moderate surgical risk and for whom carotid endarterectomy has been proven effective and safe.
CREST is a trial designed to determine if stenting is appropriate for patients like you.
Teamwork is very important to CREST and the physicians in CREST will all work together with you and your primary care physician for your health.