Skip to Content

Peripheral Vascular Stent Placement


What do I need to know about peripheral vascular stent placement?

Peripheral vascular stent placement is surgery to widen an artery in your leg. A stent is a small cylinder-shaped tube used to widen a blood vessel. It can be placed in an artery in your upper or lower leg.

How should I prepare for the surgery?

Your caregiver may give you medicine, such as aspirin, to help prevent blood clots. Take your antiplatelet medicine exactly as directed. These medicines make it more likely for you to bleed or bruise. If you are told to take aspirin, do not take acetaminophen or ibuprofen instead.

What will happen during the surgery?

  • Your surgeon will make an incision in your groin, and insert a catheter into the artery of your leg. He will inject contrast dye through the catheter, and take an x-ray to help him find the blockage. He may place a device that looks like a small balloon, and inflate it to widen the artery. He will remove the balloon and insert in one or more stents to hold your artery open.
  • After surgery, pressure will be placed on your incision to decrease the risk of bleeding. You will need to lay flat for about 4 to 6 hours. Most people do not feel pain during or after surgery. You will then be taken back to your hospital room or allowed to go home. Ask a family member or friend to drive you home after your surgery. Do not drive yourself home.

What are the risks of the surgery?

You may bleed more than expected or get an infection. Your symptoms, such as pain, may not go away. The stent may break and block or tear your artery. You may get a blood clot in your leg. This may become life-threatening. You may need to have another stent placement surgery.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© 2015 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.