The latest studies have clearly demonstrated the efficacy of carotid endarterectomy. However, most of these studies excluded patients over the age of 80. Some authors question the efficacy of and indication for endarterectomy in octogenarians. We therefore compared our results for endarterectomies on patients aged under and over 80. The author reviewed 475 carotid endarterectomies that he himself performed between July 1, 1990 and February 28, 2001; 72 of these procedures were carried out on 65 patients (15%) aged 80 and over. Both perioperative neurological events and mortality were studied. The outcome of carotid endarterectomy in both patient population groups was comparable; more than 70% of octogenarians were still alive 4 years later the same indications for carotid endarterectomy should therefore be applied to octogenarians.