ZEPHYR / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ZEPHYR / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Arterial stent. Coloured coronal (frontal) MRA (magnetic resonance angiography) scan of a stent (gap at upper right) in an artery (red) in a patient's groin. The stent is in the left iliac artery. The two iliac arteries (red) branch from the aorta at top centre, and become the femoral arteries of the upper legs. The stent was inserted, using a catheter, during an angioplasty of the artery. This operation widened the artery from its previously blocked state, restoring the blood flow. The stent is made of nitinol, a shape- memory alloy of nickel and titanium. MRA is a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique that highlights blood vessels. It does not use X-rays.
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