A Primer on Venous Stents and Stenting for Patients and Families

a woman holding on to her aching legs

Narrow and/or weak blood vessels may suddenly burst and lead to a hemorrhage. This is where a venous stent comes in handy to prevent the situation from getting worse.

A venous stent is a tube made from metal or fabric, and it’s in a mesh configuration. By supporting the wall of the vessel, you can preserve the integrity of the veins. People with blocked arteries also benefit from this tool significantly.


Stents create a circular tube that keeps the formerly narrowed opening viable for blood flow. Over time, these devices may straighten, which can be potentially harmful. The vein is an elastic tube, and the tendency to collapse again is strong. Hence, stenting is necessary to prevent the harmful effects of compromised or inadequate blood flow to body parts. After placement, the device can function optimally for as long as 50 years for venous applications or about five to 20 years for arterial applications.

Design and material

The design of stents must conform to the anatomy of the veins, and the material should be durable enough to resist venous movement. The spring-like quality of the metal or fabric allows for it to be compressed into a tube with a small cross-section. Ideally, the tube must be flexible at specific points and durable at high-pressure points. If there are stress signs, which are visible as kinks, the viability of the vein may already be compromised.


Stenting is a procedure used to treat different conditions including peripheral artery disease, coronary artery disease, and coronary heart disease. Chronic venous insufficiency is also treated with stenting.

Venous obstruction can have serious consequences. For many doctors, any compressive lesion requires stenting before complications arise. A common site for placement of the device is the abdominal or pelvic veins, which drain the affected leg. With proper placement, the patient can benefit from good inflow and good outflow.

In some diseases, the veins are blocked and symptoms usually arise on the affected extremity. Problems with the veins can be disabling and painful. Fortunately, stenting is an available treatment option, allowing patients to function more independently in daily life.


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