Directional continuous wave Doppler ultrasonography has been used to assess the extracranial carotid arteries of over 500 patients, 90 of whom have had angiography performed. The angiographic and Doppler findings are compared, showing that this simple ultrasound technique is able to detect carotid stenosis and occlusion, but is unreliable in the detection of mild atheromatous change. In this series, the method detected 90% of the angiographically proven carotid stenoses, being considerably more accurate than routine auscultation. It would seem that continuous wave ultrasonography is a safe and practical screening test in those patients in whom arteriography is being considered.
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