A narrowed or blocked coronary artery (see ARTERIES) can compromise the blood supply to the heart muscle (see HEART, DISEASES OF). A supportive tube or stent passed into each aﬀected artery can restore the blood supply. The stent has a HEPARIN coating to stop blood clots from forming. Since it was ﬁrst performed in 1987, intracoronary stents have cut the reblockage rate from one in three patients who have had coronary ANGIOPLASTY to fewer than one in ten in cases where a stent was used with angioplasty.
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