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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 1986 May;146(5):1061-5.

Sonographic characterization of carotid plaque: detection of hemorrhage.


By careful evaluation of the sonographic characteristics of carotid plaques, two patterns can be identified: a homogeneous pattern containing uniform echoes corresponding to dense fibrous tissue and a heterogeneous pattern containing mixed echoes and anechoic areas that represent intraplaque hemorrhage pathologically. A prospective study was conducted of 50 patients to determine the accuracy of identifying these different forms of plaque. The patients' carotid arteries were examined by a high-resolution duplex scanner before carotid endarterectomy. The plaques were evaluated carefully by vascular surgeons and pathologists for the presence of intraplaque hemorrhage. In this study, the accuracy of identifying the presence or absence of intraplaque hemorrhage with sonography was 90% (48 of 54); sensitivity, 94% (17 of 18); and specificity, 88% (27 of 31). High-resolution sonography appears to be an accurate means of identifying intraplaque hemorrhage and may ultimately be useful in identifying patients at risk for embolic disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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