Implication of Earlier Carotid Atherosclerosis for Stroke and Its Subtypes

Yoji Nagai, MD, PhD, Kazuo Kitagawa, MD, PhD, Masayasu Matsumoto, MD, PhD


Prev Cardiol. 2003;6(2) 

In This Article


As a reflection of systemic atherosclerosis, earlier stages of carotid atherosclerosis are associated with the risk for stroke; however, stroke is a heterogeneous disease with different etiologies, in which atherosclerosis does not always play a direct role. We have found increased severity of carotid atherosclerosis in AI and LI patients, whereas the severity was similar between other stroke subtype and nonstroke patients. Additionally, although evaluation of carotid atherosclerosis appears to aid in risk assessment of AI and LI, the benefit may be greater for AI. Large prospective studies are necessary to establish the link between early carotid atherosclerosis and future risk for specific stroke subtypes.