The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the Absorb Bioresorbable Vascular System (BVS) for the treatment of coronary artery disease. It is the first and only fully dissolving, drug-eluting cardiac stent. In 2002, Dr. DeSimone made key contributions in developing materials for the stent, leading him to co-found Bioabsorbable Vascular Solutions (also known as BioStent) in partnership with Duke cardiologist, Richard Stack. Guidant acquired Bioabsorbable Vascular Solutions in 2003, and when Boston Scientific acquired Guidant, the stent franchise was sold to Abbott, which now markets the technology.
The dissolvable stent supports a patient’s clogged artery with the same strength as a traditional metal stent, but then uniquely dissolves completely over time after blood flow has been restored to the heart and the vessel is able to stay open on its own. This promotes healing by enabling a vessel to regain its natural flexibility without being inhibited by a permanent metal device.
The new device advanced rapidly through clinical trials worldwide, is now available in over 100 countries, and has been used in over 150,000 patients.