Placing a stent (a small wire mesh tube) is a common method to open arteries that are narrowed or blocked by fatty deposits. A peripheral stent is used to open narrowing in the arteries to the legs, arms, kidneys or intestines. This increases the blood flow to these areas of the body.
Stent treatments at Loyola are often performed using minimally invasive techniques. Before the stent is put in place, angioplasty is performed by inserting a balloon catheter to open a narrowed artery. As the balloon is deflated and pulled out, the stent remains in the artery and serves as a permanent scaffolding to keep the artery open.
Stents can be placed in the arteries to the legs to relieve blockages. These stents can help improve the circulation to the legs in order to resolve pain with walking, pain that occurs in the feet at night, or wounds.
A renal stent is used to treat narrowing and blockages in the renal arteries, which supply blood to the kidneys.
A carotid stent is one method used to treat disease in the carotid arteries, the main vessels supplying blood to the brain. Before stent placement, a guide wire with a filter is positioned past the narrowed area in the carotid artery and a small balloon is inflated to widen the artery. Then a stent is placed to provide support. The filter captures particles that may be released during the procedure to prevent a stroke.
Mesenteric artery stenting is one method for relieving blockages in the arteries that supply blood to the intestines.