Tailoring stents to fit the anatomy of unique vascular stenoses in congenital heart disease

Patrick M. Sullivan, Aimee Liou, Cheryl Takao, Henri Justino, Christopher J. Petit, Jorge D. Salazar, Frank Ing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: Unique and small anatomical features often preclude the use of available vascular stents in pediatric patients with congenital heart disease (CHD). Objectives: To report our experience and outcomes tailoring stents to fit unique anatomy, particularly in small children and infants with CHD. Methods: Stent tailoring techniques included trimming, folding, and flaring. Patients receiving a tailored stent November 2002 to February 2015 were included in a retrospective analysis. Results: Forty-one tailored stents were implanted in 30 patients with median age and weight of 0.8 years (6 days to 17 years) and 8.1 kg (2.9–47.9 kg). Thirty stents were placed intraoperatively and 11 percutaneously. Sites included branch pulmonary arteries (BPA; n = 32), pulmonary veins (n = 6), SVC (n = 1), and the ventricular septum (n = 2). Twenty-three (56%) stents were trimmed with or without folding to avoid jailing of side branches, 16 (39%) stents were folded or flared with or without trimming to avoid excessive proximal protrusion, and two (5%) stents were folded back at both ends for implantation in ventricular septal defects. Final stent lengths were 6–15 mm. Minimal vessel diameters increased from 2.8 ± 1.4 mm to 6.7 ± 2.6 mm (P < 0.001). Complications included two intraoperative BPA tears, three pinhole balloon leaks, two intraoperative stent dislodgements, one transient heart block, and one lung reperfusion injury. Follow-up catheterization included 36 re-dilations and implantation of four additional stents over a median of 4.1 years. In-stent restenosis was the indication in 25 (69.4%) re-interventions. Conclusion: Tailored stents can be safely implanted to fit unique anatomy in small patients. Re-interventions can effectively treat restenosis and accommodate ongoing vessel growth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)963-971
Number of pages9
JournalCatheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 15 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • congenital heart disease
  • intravascular stent therapy
  • stent modifications, pediatrics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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