Angioplasty, illustration

Angioplasty, illustration

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Credit: HARVINDER SINGH/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Angioplasty. Computer illustration showing a stent (wire mesh) being positioned in an artery narrowed by atherosclerosis. A wire-like catheter has been inserted into the artery and moved to the site of the constriction. A balloon will then be inflated in order to expand the stent, which will hold the artery open after the balloon has been deflated and the catheter removed. This procedure is known as balloon angioplasty. The most common cause of arterial narrowing is atherosclerosis, the deposition of fatty plaques of atheroma (yellow) on the inner wall of an artery.

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