Lessons Learned Regarding Handling and Deployment of the Absorb Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffold in Infrapopliteal Arteries
Purpose: To describe relevant technical details with which to facilitate safe and effective use of the Absorb coronary bioresorbable vascular scaffold (BVS) in lower extremity arteries. Technique: The Absorb BVS is a balloon-expandable, poly-L-lactide structure covered in a poly-D,L-lactide bioresorbable polymer that contains the antiproliferative drug everolimus. As a polymeric structure, it has a number of unique physical, handling, and imaging properties that may differ from metallic stents and pose a challenge to the interventionist. Attention must be paid to lesion selection, preparation, scaffold sizing, deployment, and postdilation to achieve optimal outcomes. A detailed description of these issues and deployment techniques is offered based on experience using this BVS in below-the-knee arteries. Conclusion: The Absorb BVS may have application in the infrapopliteal circulation; however, its unique properties warrant careful consideration before use in the lower limb.