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Clinical Cardiology
October 11, 2000

Coronary Artery Stents

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Division of Cardiovascular Diseases and Department of Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic and Foundation, Rochester, Minn.


Clinical Cardiology Section Editors: Bruce Brundage, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, School of Medicine; Phil B. Fontanarosa, MD, Executive Deputy Editor, JAMA.

JAMA. 2000;284(14):1828-1836. doi:10.1001/jama.284.14.1828

Context Intracoronary stents are now used for the majority of patients undergoing percutaneous coronary revascularization, and the body of scientific knowledge about stents has expanded rapidly in the last several years.

Objective To review the evidence supporting the widespread use of intracoronary stents.

Data Sources The MEDLINE database was searched for articles from 1990 through January 2000 using the indexing terms stents, coronary artery disease, and angioplasty. Additional data sources included bibliographies of articles identified on MEDLINE, bibliographies in textbooks on percutaneous coronary interventions, and preliminary data presented at recent national and international cardiology conferences.

Study Selection We selected for review studies that assessed the effects of stenting on the immediate and long-term outcome of patients undergoing percutaneous coronary revascularization. If data from randomized controlled trials were not available for specific patient subsets or lesion characteristics, observational studies were included.

Data Extraction The methodologic characteristics of studies in coronary stenting were extracted and summarized according to key components of research design, including lesion type, location, and adjunctive therapy used. Studies were classified according to the strength of the available data into proven and unproven indications for stent use.

Data Synthesis Coronary artery stents increase the safety of interventional procedures, increase procedure success rates, and decrease the need for emergency coronary artery bypass graft surgery.

Conclusions Intracoronary stents have become an essential component of the catheter-based treatment of coronary artery disease. The evidence indicates that elective stenting, rather than provisional stenting or balloon angioplasty alone, improves clinical outcomes in the months following percutaneous coronary revascularization in a wide variety of clinical settings and lesion types.