The world’s first drug eluting Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffold (BVS) has won accolades from cardiologists worldwide as an invention that is hoped to revolutionise heart disease management. With BVS which is launched under the brand name Absorb by pharmaceutical Major Abbott, patients with coronary heart disease (CAD) can now have broad and better treatment options, reduced need of long term medicines and extremely reduced risk of stent induced side effects, according to a press release.
Absorb consists of a biodegradable polymer backbone. It works in 3 phases. First, Absorb is placed in the artery to open and support the vessel while a drug is released to treat the diseased area and limit the regrowth of tissue, which could narrow the vessel and reduce blood flow. Next, a thin layer of tissue and healthy cells covers Absorb as the vessel wall regains strength and returns to a more natural state. Lastly once the vessel no longer needs support, the scaffold begins to dissolve naturally, ultimately breaking down to carbon dioxide and water. This makes it possible for the vessel to return to a more natural state.
Since their launch in 2003, drug-eluting stents have been adopted worldwide. However, there are several complications with drug-eluting stents such as late-stent thrombosis, need for long term anti-platelet therapy and incompatibility with imaging modalities. These unmet needs have been addressed with the development of bioabsorbable stents, such as Absorb.