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December 1967

Recurrent Monocular Blindness Due to a Redundant Carotid Artery

Author Affiliations

Loma Linda, Calif
From the Department of Surgery, Loma Linda (Calif) University.

Arch Surg. 1967;95(6):908-910. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1967.01330180056010

TORTUOSITY with kinking of the carotid artery has been a known anatomic curiosity for many years. It first assumed clinical importance when injury to the tortuous segment during tonsillectomy resulted in massive hemorrhage.1 Preoperative palpation of the tonsillar fossa for arterial pulsation was recommended to prevent this catastrophic complication. Quattelbaum et al2 reported transient hemiparesis in three patients who experienced intermittent internal carotid artery obstruction when the head was turned in such a way as to cause kinking of the vessel.

The purpose of this paper is to present a patient who experienced recurrent transient blindness in the right eye due to tortuosity and kinking of the right common carotid artery following turning the head toward the side of the lesion. This visual disturbance is thought to be the first such reported due to this type of vascular obstruction.

Report of a Case  A 73-year-old white woman experienced

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