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Carotid Artery Stenosis on Panoramic Radiographs and CT Scans in Patients With Malignancies After Radiotherapy.

Anticancer Research 2023 December
BACKGROUND/AIM: This study aimed to identify the progression of carotid artery stenosis (CAS) in patients with head and neck cancer following radiation therapy (RT) by characterizing associated risk factors.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: Panoramic radiographs (OPG), computed tomography (CT) scans, cone-beam CT (CBCT) scans, and ultrasonography (US) of 69 patients with head and neck tumors were selected and analyzed to identify the presence of CAS. Data on tumor location, smoking status, hypertension (HTN), hyperlipidemia (HLD), diabetes mellitus (DM), and treatment were collected from the patients' medical records. Patients who received chemotherapy or no treatment were excluded from the study. The differential diagnosis of other radiopacities and anatomical landmarks were excluded. Patients were divided into two groups: those with CAS (group1) and those without CAS (group 2) and their clinical information was compared.

RESULTS: The overall prevalence of CAS on the panoramic radiographs was 16%. Of the 69 patients, 44 underwent radiography before and after radiotherapy, only seven had mild CAS on radiographs after radiotherapy, and no significant difference in CAS was identified before and after radiotherapy. There were also no differences between the groups regarding age, sex, smoking, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, hyperlipidemia, tumor location, and RT dose before and after radiation (p>0.05).

CONCLUSION: Radiotherapy does not seem to affect the prevalence of CAS, although it has been identified in some patients after radiotherapy completion.

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