Aims: Provisional stenting with drug-eluting-stents is actually adopted to treat most of bifurcated lesions. A major drawback of this technique is the risk of side-branch (SB) closure after main vessel (MV) stenting. Methods and results: We set-up, and bench tested, a novel technique for SB protection based on the placement of a balloon in the SB during MV stenting. The uninflated balloon, which remains jailed under the stent struts, serves to reduce both carina and plaque shifts due to its SB ostium spatial occupation. If SB flow is preserved after MV stenting, the jailed balloon is removed uninflated. If the SB becomes occluded after MV stenting, the jailed balloon may either be used as a marker and a favourable angle modifier to facilitate rewiring or can be dilated to try to restore SB flow. SB rewiring and kissing balloon inflation must be performed to correct stent deformation or malapposition. This novel technique has been successfully adopted in 20 patients with complex (55% unprotected left main, 85% Medina 1,1,1 lesions) true bifurcated lesions undergoing drug-eluting-stent implantation. Conclusions: The jailed balloon protection is a novel technique aimed at improving SB protection during provisional stenting of bifurcated lesions considered at high risk of SB compromise after MV stenting.
- Percutaneous coronary interventions