(800) 369-0899
(215) 569-4000

Contact Us Today



Can Drug-Coated Stents Cause Severe Medical Issues?


In recent years, drug-coated stents have proven to be popular due to their medical benefits. They are preferred over metal stents because they are more likely to prevent a blockage. However, a drug-coated stent is still a medical device that is a work in progress.

In the last couple of years, there have been two generations of drug-coated stents, and with each model, there are new findings, risks, and issues being worked out. Medicine is always changing as well as the development of products, which means there may have been some mistakes made or risks that caused complications for some patients. Anyone who has fallen victim to a defective medical product is encouraged to contact a lawyer.

A stent is a small tube that is used in normalizing blood flow where clotting has once occurred. Normally, metal or plastic is permanently placed into an artery or blood vessel. This lattice-shaped implant is meant to open an artery that has become too narrow, usually due to a result of atherosclerosis, which is condition in which plaque buildup prevents blood flow. A stent will prevent further blocking or re-blocking of the artery.

A drug-coated stent slowly emits drugs that are intended to prevent arterial scarring and diminish the possibility of restenosis. Unlike a regular stent, a drug-coated stent is made of plastic rather than metal.

If someone has a history of bleeding problems, a drug-coated stent may not be a safe implant to get. When receiving this stent, a great deal of aspirin and blood thinners are required to be taken, so combined with the bleeding problems, a patient may suffer more harm than good.

What are Some Side Effects of Drug-Coated Stents?

A major side effect of a drug-coated stent is stent thrombosis. This is when a sudden blockage of an artery happens due to a blood clot. This has killed many of those who have suffered heart attacks after having a drug-coated stent implant.

Since becoming available, there are two generations of drug-coated stents. The first generation proved to have more problems than the second due to it being an early model and having some complications that needed to be worked out. Since then, the second generation drug-coated stent has proven to be safer due to improved coating methods being developed.

Some studies have shown that drug-eluting stents may impact collateral artery functions. The body is then no longer able to create new blood vessels to replace the ones that are blocked.

There have been a great deal of patients who have already received these drug-coated stents, and later on, they come to learn the large number of complications. Some victims learn that the drug that is continuing to be administered through the stent is preventing cell growth that could eventually close the arteries.

Some risks of drug-coated stents include infection, blood clots, bleeding, and rupture of the duct or vessel when the stent is inserted. These risks are the most common when a stent is required, and most of the time, symptoms are manageable. Other risks are stent movement or migration and allergic reactions to stent material or the drugs used in the stents. These are all risks that doctors must inform their patients of and work with them to discuss treatments if any problems occur.

Risk of Blood Clots

A downside to receiving a drug-eluted stent is the requirement of a blood thinner. The patient may be required to be on a blood thinner medication for a long period of time. Since there is a risk or issue with blood clotting, a blood thinner must be administered to ensure an easy flow through the stent and to the heart.

Are There Any Complications Related to Coronary Stents?

It is rare that there are complications when it comes to coronary stents, but there are some signs to be aware of. Some symptoms to monitor are chest pains, heart attacks, or tearing of the blood vessel. If any of these complications occur, it is vital that immediate medical attention is sought.

Chest pains are not something that should occur often or for long periods of time. A heart attack results from the body not responding well to the stent. A torn blood vessel can cause the flow and function of the stent to be compromised, which could result in the stent to not preform properly.

When Should Drug-Coated Stents Not be Used?

Those who have recently had heart surgery should not be offered the possibility of receiving a drug-coated stent. A stent is used as a progressive medical device in attempts to avoid requiring heart surgery, so implanting one afterwards is typically not in the best interest of the patient.

The risks are also very high. Women who are nursing or pregnant are also not great candidates for drug-coated stents due to complications that can harm or affect their child.

Drug-coated stents also should not be used on patients that are allergic to the materials used in the stent itself. All information related to allergies should always be discussed beforehand.

Additionally, patients who cannot handle blood thinner medications should not be given a drug-coated stent. These types of medications are required when a body is adapting to the stent to encourage better blood flow.

Recent Medical Research

In recent studies, patients who have been treated with drug-eluting stents are experiencing less collateral function than those who were treated with bare-metal stents. There have been complications where some patients have not responded to the stent and blood clots still occurred.

There has been a great deal of questions related to the first and second generation of stents. Despite the second generation stent being more efficient, there are some lingering factors that all patients must consider.

What Steps Should I Follow After a Stent Placement?

Medical professionals advise those who have just received a stent to take aspirin and anti-clotting medication and to inform other health care providers of the recent procedure.

It is important to monitor the progression after a stent placement and document any changes; this will help if the stent is discovered to be defective. If any information and medical updates during recovery are being recorded, than that information can be used in court.

What are the Roles of Medical Professionals and Manufacturers?

All medical manufacturers have an obligation to produce safe products, as well as inform the general public and medical community of all known risks associated with the devices. If a company or manufacturer fails to do so, they might be held legally responsible if any patients are injured as a result. For help with a case, a victim should speak to a lawyer about the defective drug-coated stent.

Philadelphia Defective Medical Device Lawyers at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler Help Those Affected by Faulty Drug-Coated Stents

Those who are suffering from injuries that are caused by defective drug-coated stents might be eligible to pursue a legal case. A Philadelphia defective medical device lawyer at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler can determine if a medical manufacturer is responsible for your injuries. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Delaware County, Chester County, and Philadelphia County. Call us at 215-569-4000 or complete our online form for a free consultation today.