A new stent design may put patients at risk

November 17, 2011

Some stents that keep blood vessels open to treat heart disease are poorly designed to resist shortening, according to publications in the Journal of Interventional Cardiology. A case report published in the journal by Dr. Cindy Grines, of the Detroit Medical Center Cardiovascular Institute, and her colleagues describes a patient who experienced a heart attack after the recently marketed Ion stent (Boston Scientific, Natick, MA) in his artery shortened and accordioned. The articles indicate that some stents are susceptible to becoming deformed, which could result in adverse clinical consequences.

Coronary stents, which are scaffolds placed within arteries that to the heart, are lifesavers for many patients with heart disease and other conditions. By using and developing advanced designs, manufacturers have been working to continually improve the performance of stents to prevent blood vessels from becoming blocked.

Recently, though, researchers and clinicians have identified stent shortening as a newly observed deformity in cases using a particular family of stents. This shortening usually occurred when the clinician attempted to complete the procedure with the typical and balloons used after a stent is implanted. Stent shortening and deformity can cause serious complications for patients; in this case the stent clotted off and the patient had a .

In an accompanying editorial, Dr. Grines notes that the results are "disturbing" and that because clinicians, researchers, and regulators are rapidly investigating the issue, hopefully there will soon be new recommendations regarding the use of this particular design of stents.

Explore further: Stents may reduce heart attacks by delivering downstream medication

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Researchers find sleep gene linked to heart failure

November 30, 2015

Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have identified a gene that, when working properly, appears to reduce the risk of heart failure and improve treatment outcomes, highlighting a possible target for ...

No new heart muscle cells in mice after the newborn period

November 5, 2015

A new study from Sweden's Karolinska Institutet shows that new heart muscle cells in mice are mainly formed directly after birth. After the neonatal period the number of heart muscle cells does not change, and A new study ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.