If you are scheduled to undergo carotid artery surgery, it is likely being performed to clear a blockage that’s causing the artery to narrow. Once cleared, proper blood flow to your brain is restored. The surgery lasts a few hours, but after that, what can you expect in terms of recovery time?
At Baton Rouge Vascular Specialty Center, we perform surgeries based on your unique treatment plan, then map your recovery according to your individual goals, health and lifestyle. However, there are some general timelines for carotid artery surgery recovery we can share.
Average carotid artery recovery time
After surgery, most people can return to normal activities within three to four weeks. Although, many get back to their daily routines as soon as they feel up to it. During the first few weeks of your recovery, some key things to keep in mind include:
- You may have some soreness in your neck for about two weeks.
- You may need help with preparing meals, housekeeping and shopping.
- DO NOT drive until the incision is healed (so you can turn your head without discomfort).
- Prepare to experience some numbness along your jaw and near your earlobe. This is from the incision, but for most people, it goes away in 6 to 12 months.
Carotid artery surgery recovery tips
During your recovery, you may have different symptoms arise that don’t feel normal or right to you. Call your health care provider if you have:
- Headaches, confusion, numbness or weakness in any part of your body
- Problems with your vision, problems speaking, or trouble understanding what others are saying
- Trouble swallowing
- Chest pain, dizziness, or shortness of breath that does not go away with rest
- Coughing up blood or yellow or green mucus
- Chills or a fever over 101°F (38.3°C) or a fever that persists even after taking acetaminophen
- A red or painful incision, or yellow or green discharge from the incision
- Swelling in your legs
Although a proven surgical technique with high success rates, carotid artery surgery does not cure the cause of the blockage in your arteries. To avoid your arteries becoming narrow again, you may need to take medication, adjust your diet, begin an exercise regimen and make other lifestyle changes, like quitting smoking.
Innovative, compassionate vascular care right here in Baton Rouge
Whether you’re facing carotid artery surgery or another kind of vascular issue, know that leading-edge care is on your doorstep. At the Baton Rouge Vascular Specialty Center, the team of fellowship-trained, board-certified vascular specialists have been treating the people of Louisiana for more than 30 years.
Our physicians are extensively trained in all aspects of traditional, endovascular and laparoscopic vascular surgery. We perform the latest vascular treatments available today, including innovative procedures not offered by other providers.
To learn more or schedule an appointment with one of our vascular specialists, call (225) 769-4493 or click here to use our online form.