Morphological, Functional, and Biological Vascular Healing Response 6 Months After Drug-Eluting Stent Implantation: A Randomized Comparison of Three Drug-Eluting Stents

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This study evaluated coronary endothelial function after the implantation of sirolimus-eluting stents (SESs), everolimus-eluting stents (EESs), and zotarolimus-eluting stents (ZES) by a different methodology, and also analyzed whether optical coherence tomography (OCT) findings represent endothelial healing after stenting.


It is unclear whether OCT assessment of stent strut coverage represents endothelial healing after drug-eluting stent implantation.


Thirty patients with a left anterior descending artery lesion were randomized 1:1:1 to receive an SES, EES, or ZES. The vascular response was evaluated 6 months after stenting by three methods: the functional response by acetylcholine infusion, the morphological response by OCT, and the biological response by measuring vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) levels.


The proportion of uncovered struts by OCT at 6 months was significantly higher in both SES and EES than in ZES. However, the vasomotor response was impaired and the VEGF level of the coronary sinus was significantly lower in SES than in EES and ZES. There were no relationships between the OCT findings and vasomotor response to acetylcholine and VEGF levels in all cohorts.


The vascular response at 6 months was more preserved in ZES and EES than in SES. Our results suggest that the morphological assessment with OCT may not always be used as a surrogate for functional and biological healing response after stenting. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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