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Drug-Eluting Stents

Innovative Clogged Artery Solution Can Cause Serious Side-Effects

Drug-eluting stents are drug-coated cylindrical-shaped wire mesh devices that are used to prop open arteries. Drug-eluting stents were approved by the FDA in 2003 and hailed as an innovative solution to the problem of clogged arteries. Their predecessors, bare metal mesh stents, also worked by propping up clogged arteries, but failed once scar tissue formed around the stents and caused the arteries to become re-clogged. The drug-eluting stents work by propping open the clogged artery and then slowly releasing medication that works to keep scar tissue from forming around the device.

Unfortunately, these innovative medical devices are not without their risks. The drug that keeps the arteries from re-clogging can cause serious side-effects including blood clots, heart attack, and death. The American College of Cardiology estimates that 2,000 people die each year due to complications from drug-eluting stents.

DRUG-ELUTING STENTS ON THE MARKET

  • Boston Scientific- Element Stent
  • Medtronic- Endeavor Resolute Integrity Stent
  • Abbot Laboratories- Xience Stent
  • Biosensors International Group Ltd.- BioMatrix Stent
  • Johnson & Johnson Cordis- Cypher Stent

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