In the last decade, number of patents claiming degradable biomaterials have been increasing worldwide. This novel class of biomaterials is intended to be used for implants having temporary function like coronary stents. Biodegradable stents are expected to provide a temporary opening for narrowed arterial vessels until they remodel and progressively disappear thereafter. Metallic biodegradable stents have recently been advanced to pre-clinical tests in humans after their first introduction in early 2000s. By referring to patents and journal publications, this article will review the metallic biodegradable stents, highlighting materials and processes. Their current and future developments will be discussed.
Keywords: Biodegradable stent, degradable metallic biomaterials, iron, magnesium, laser cutting, coating
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