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Biomed Eng Online. 2010 Mar 9;9:15. doi: 10.1186/1475-925X-9-15.

Factors that affect mass transport from drug eluting stents into the artery wall.

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Centre for Applied Biomedical Engineering Research, Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering and the Materials and Surface Science Institute, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland.


Coronary artery disease can be treated by implanting a stent into the blocked region of an artery, thus enabling blood perfusion to distal vessels. Minimally invasive procedures of this nature often result in damage to the arterial tissue culminating in the re-blocking of the vessel. In an effort to alleviate this phenomenon, known as restenosis, drug eluting stents were developed. They are similar in composition to a bare metal stent but encompass a coating with therapeutic agents designed to reduce the overly aggressive healing response that contributes to restenosis. There are many variables that can influence the effectiveness of these therapeutic drugs being transported from the stent coating to and within the artery wall, many of which have been analysed and documented by researchers. However, the physical deformation of the artery substructure due to stent expansion, and its influence on a drugs ability to diffuse evenly within the artery wall have been lacking in published work to date. The paper highlights previous approaches adopted by researchers and proposes the addition of porous artery wall deformation to increase model accuracy.

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