The history of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is marked by rapid technological advancements that have taken place over the past 40 years. After a period of balloon angioplasty, which was marred by risk of abrupt vessel closure and vessel recoil, balloon expandable metal alloy stents were the mainstay of PCI. The introduction of drug eluting stents (DES) targeted in-stent restenosis, a common mode of stent failure, and ushered in the current PCI era. Since the first generation of DES, advances in polymer science and stent design have advanced the field. The current generation of DES has thin struts, are highly deliverable, have biocompatible or absorbable polymers, and outstanding safety and efficacy profiles. In this review, we discuss the technological advancements in stent development, design, and construction, with an emphasis on balloon expandable stents. The aspects of stent properties, metal alloys, bioresorbable vascular scaffolds, drug elution, and polymers will be covered.
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