A 52-year-old man made history at Manatee Memorial Hospital Wednesday by becoming the first person in Bradenton or Sarasota to receive a cardiac stent that can gradually dissolve in the body.
The unnamed patient is doing well after an Abbott Absorb GT 1 Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffold stent was inserted in his heart by Dr. S. Jay Mathews and a team of interventional cardiologists at the Manatee Heart and Vascular Center at Manatee Memorial, according to a news release.
The Absorb GT1 Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffold stent opens clogged arteries to restore blood flow and gradually dissolves in the body and reduces the risk of future blockages that can occur with metal stents, the release states.
After about three years, when the stent is completely absorbed by the body, it leaves behind a “restored” blood vessel that has improved vasomotor function, according to the Abbott Absorb website.
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The Abbott Absorb implant is the world’s first FDA-approved dissolving heart stent.
While stents are traditionally made of metal, the Absorb stent is made of a naturally dissolving material, similar to dissolving sutures. It disappears completely except for two pairs of tiny metallic markers that remain in the artery to enable a physician to see where the device was placed. By contrast, metal stents are permanent implants.
“The Absorb stent is a major advancement in the treatment of coronary artery disease,” Mathews said. “The patient’s artery is able to function more naturally than when a traditional, metal stent is used. The treated artery can pulse and flex more naturally, and the dissolving stent may also reduce the potential of future blockage that may occur with metallic stents. I am thrilled to be the first cardiologist to have completed this first procedure at Manatee Memorial Hospital.”