What is a stent?
A stent is an expandable metal coil—sometimes coated with a drug that is released over time—that is placed in a blocked blood vessel to prevent it from becoming blocked again. If your cardiologist determines that you need a stent, he’ll most likely do so during a cardiac catheterization. Your cardiologist uses imaging (X-rays) and dyes to precisely locate any narrowed areas in your blood vessels. If he or she finds narrowed areas, the cardiologist then places a stent; the x-rays and dyes also help to ensure proper stent placement. The stent is placed on a balloon catheter (small tube) and threaded to the narrowed artery. The balloon is inflated, then deflated and removed, leaving the stent in place within your artery.
What does a stent treat?
Your physician may recommend you have a stent placed in a coronary artery if you have blockage in an artery of your heart. Stents also may be recommended if you have a blockage in an artery that goes to an extremity or your head.
Why choose Ohio State for stents?
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center exceeds national standards regarding the “door to balloon time” for acute cardiac events. Our team of interventional cardiologists is dedicated not only to patient care, but are also on the leading edge of both clinical and basic science research.
Ohio State’s Ross Heart Hospital performs more than 5,000 procedures a year, making it one of the highest volume centers in the area. Because we’ve done so many procedures, our staff is better equipped and more experienced in handling even the most difficult cases.
We’re putting our cath lab to good use, using it for more than just normal heart catheterizations by developing monitoring methods and treatments for heart failure that can be performed in the cath lab and researching stem cell treatments for heart attack. Our interventional cardiology program (including our cath lab) experienced a 20 percent increase in procedures between 2006 and 2009 – all of this despite a national downturn in caths and coronary angioplasties.
Ohio State has extensive experience with minimally invasive coronary angioplasty and stenting procedures for peripheral artery disease; stent grafting and endovascular repair for aortic aneurysms; and carotid stenting.