The carotid arteries supply the head and neck with oxygenated blood. Carotid artery disease refers to the narrowing of these arteries caused by the build up of plaque (fatty substances along the inner wall of the artery). Since carotid arteries supply blood to the brain there is a risk for stroke when the arteries are narrowed.
Warning signs for carotid artery disease may include:
- Sudden weakness, tingling or numbness on one side of the face or body.
- Sudden confusion, dizziness, or difficulty speaking.
- Sudden blurred vision or difficulty seeing out of one or both eyes.
- Sudden severe headache.
- Sudden loss of balance, difficulty walking.