A stent is a tubular structure made of metal or ceramic sometimes coated with drugs, is used to keep the artery of your heart muscle open when it gets narrowed due to fatty depositions or plaque. This wire like structure is known as a stent. Fatty deposits within the walls of the artery result are blood clotting and prevention of blood flow causing chest pain and sometimes heart attack. With the procedure of angioplasty and cardiac angiogram, a stent is placed in the coronary artery of your heart so that the blood flow comes back to normal and there is no risk of heart failure.
Can You Have A Stent Removed?
It is usually said the once a stent is implanted in your heart muscles it cannot be removed. After a stent is implanted and you begin your medicinal therapy, the stent begins to become a part of your body. The stent starts acting like an organ and the heart adjusts to it considering the stent to be a part of it. When a stent is being implanted, it is being permanently embedded into the wall of the artery. It cannot be removed from the artery without causing any damage to the artery. In case the stent implanted fails to function properly can causes blockage again, a new stent can be planted within the older stent by re opening it. The tissues start to grow around the stent placed in your artery as soon as the stent is accepted by your body. So it is highly recommended that a stent should not be removed or replaced. Most doctors say that a stent implantation is permanent and hence before getting a stent implantation consult with your cardiologist about the kind if stent that will be helpful for you and what are the pros and cons of a stent.
If Strongly Required, How Can You Have A Stent Removed?
The procedure for removing a stent under very severe circumstance is called endarterectomy. Such a surgery is done when the artery is stented from stem to stem, which is like attaching a full metal jacket to the artery. Under such a condition, the blockage re-appears there is no possibility to conduct a bypass surgery since the stent (a metal one or a drug eluted one) is already responding poorly and a bypass surgery may cause permanent heart failure. There is almost no possibility of removing a stent where an incision into the chest can be avoided.
In-stent restenosis is one of the troubles or a limitation that any kind of stent can undergo. Such a limitation is more noticed if your coronary artery is stented. If the length of the stent is extensive then the anastomosis for the distal graft of the coronary artery will also be highly challenging. Though the cases are very rare, sometimes a recurrent angina is noticed in the LAD. The coronary angiograph (the result of the angiogram) confirms a complete occlusion of the Left Anterior Descending Artery. The endarterectomy is conducted along with off-pump coronary bypass surgery under such a critical circumstance. For an off-pump bypass to be conducted the troubled stented artery needs to be in front of the heart. The stent is carefully dissected from the endothelium along with the endarterectomy material. Without the extracorporeal circulation such a delicate surgery is held.
Both the stent removing techniques are technically demanding surgical procedures and only very few can perform these. Not only these surgeries very rare to be conducted but also the mortality rate of the patient increases at least by 40%. Another occasional stent removal procedure to get the blood flow smooth again is the Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting or CARG.