Author(s): Elerding SC, Fernandez RN, Grotta JC, Lindberg RD, Causay LC,
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Abstract A retrospective study of 910 patients surviving at least five years after cervical irradiation for Hodgkin's disease, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, or primary head an neck neoplasms showed the incidence of stroke following cervical irradiation was 63 of 910 patients (6.3\%) during a mean period of observation of nine years. This represents a trend toward an increased risk for this population observed over the same period of time (p = 0.39). A prospective study of 118 similar patients currently living five years after cervical radiotherapy was performed to determine the incidence of carotid artery disease occurring as a consequence of neck irradiation. Abnormal carotid phonangiograms (CPA) were found in 25\% of the patients and abnormal oculoplethysmographs (OPG) were found in 17\%. These studies represent significant carotid lesions that are not expected in such a population. It is concluded that the carotid stenoses demonstrated are most likely a consequence of prior irradiation. Patients that are five-year survivors of cervical irradiation should have noninvasive vascular laboratory studies performed as part of their routine follow-up examinations in order to detect these carotid lesions while they are occult.
This article was published in Ann Surg
and referenced in Atherosclerosis: Open Access