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Decreased Antioxidant Vitamin Concentration May Be a Risk Factor for Recurrent Carotid Stenosis

Carotid endarterectomy has been found to be associated with a transient increase in systemic oxidative stress, and this has been shown to be a predictor of restenosis. The aim of this study was to determine the incidence of early recurrent stenosis and investigate a possible role of oxidative stress in its development by measuring the concentration of antioxidant vitamins. Patients undergoing carotid endarterectomy between August 2001 and February 2003 were included in the study. A preoperative blood sample was analyzed for antioxidant vitamin concentrations. All patients were followed up by duplex scans 3 and 12 months postoperatively. Ninety-three patients (101 carotid endarterectomies) were recruited. Nine arteries had developed restenosis by 12 months. Those patients who developed recurrent stenosis had significantly lower vitamin C concentrations (19.10 ± 3.69 vs 30.11 ± 19.10, P = .02) than those who did not. This study suggests that low antioxidant vitamin levels may predispose to early restenosis after carotid endarterectomy.