Carotid bruits

Are good markers for generalized atherosclerosis.

Of limited value for the diagnosis of carotid stenosis.

The presence of a carotid bruit is associated with increased risk of vascular disease, which includes stroke, myocardial infarction, and cardiovascular death (Pickett CA).

Bruits generated by turbulence in the carotid blood vessels.

They may be strong with mild stenosis, and they disappear once the gnosis becomes critical, with marked restriction of blood flow.

In asymptomatic patients with vascular risk factors auscultation is sufficient as a screening tool.

In symptomatic patients with transient ischemic attacks or stroke carotid artery disease cannot be evaluated with simple auscultation of the neck, because carotid bruits have relatively low sensitivity for the detection of moderate to severe carotid artery stenosis.

In general, carotid bruits has good specificity, but its specificity is lower for graded degrees of stenosis.

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