Stent underexpansion is a predictor of in-stent-restenosis and stent thrombosis. Semi-compliant balloons (SCBs) are generally used for lesion preparation. It remains unknown whether routine predilatation using non-compliant balloons (NCBs) improves stent expansion in ordinary coronary lesions.
The PREdilatation by high-pressure NC balloon catheter for better vessel preparation and Optimal lesion preparation with non-compliant balloons for the implantation of bioresorbable vascular scaffolds studies randomised patients presenting with stable coronary artery disease or non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction requiring stent implantation to lesion preparation using NCBs versus SCBs. Stent expansion index (SEI-minimal luminal area/mean luminal area on optical coherence tomography) and periprocedural complications were compared.
We enrolled 104 patients: 53 patients (54 lesions) vs 51 patients (56 lesions) to the NCB and SCB groups, respectively. Predilatation pressure was higher in the NCB group (24±7 atmospheres (atm) vs 14±3 atm, p<0.0001). Postdilatation using NCBs was performed in 41 (76%) lesions vs 46 (82%) lesions pretreated with NCBs versus SCBs (p=0.57). Similar pressures were used for postdilatation with NCB in both groups (23±8 atm vs 23±9 atm, p=0.65). SEI after stent implantation was 0.88±0.13 in the NCB vs 0.85±0.14 in the SCB group (p=0.18). After postdilatation, SEI increased to 0.94±0.13 in the NCB group vs 0.88±0.13 in the SCB group (p=0.02). No relevant complications occurred.
In simple coronary lesions, predilatation/postdilatation with NCBs at high pressures appears to result in better scaffold and stent expansion. Using SCBs only for predilatation might lead to inadequate stent expansion and postdilatation with NCBs might only partially correct this. Predilatation and postdilatation using NCBs at high pressure is safe.