Introduction: Coronary angioplasty with stenting has revolutionized the treatment of coronary artery disease. This article describes the history of coronary angioplasty and stenting, reviews the contemporary stents and recommendations and highlights the on-going work and potential future directions.
Sources of data: This review examined the data on coronary stents available in PubMed.
Areas of agreement: Coronary artery stenting is the treatment of choice for patients requiring coronary angioplasty. Stents, and particularly drug-eluting stents, reduce the risk of restenosis, but may be associated with the hazard of late stent thrombosis. Dual anti-platelet treatment is recommended for patients receiving coronary stents.
Areas of controversy: The selection of stents for various lesions and patients and the duration of anti-platelet therapy remain debated areas.
Areas timely for developing research: There are on-going preclinical and clinical studies to develop better stent platforms, more biocompatible polymers, novel anti-proliferative and anti-platelet drugs, pro-healing stents and bioresorbable scaffolds.
Keywords: angioplasty; bare metal stents; bioresorbable vascular scaffold; drug-eluting stents; stents.