Implantable and Lumen-supporting Stents and Related Methods of Manufacture and Use
An implantable stent includes multiple circumferential segments that surround a bore and are connected in series along a length to form a tubular wall. Multiple adjacent alternating opposite facing crowns arranged along each segment's circumference are bridged by struts. The struts include a series of staggered arcuate edges with limited flats to provide a limited region of maximum width between significantly extended reducing diameter tapers at either end where they transition into the crowns. Connections between adjacent segments are wider and stiffer than the struts and strut-crown transitions in the segments. The crowns include inner and outer radii with off-set centers along a common axis to provide medial crown peaks along the axis that are wider than the narrowed crown shoulders on either side of the axis and from which the tapered struts extend. Material strain and flexure along the stent during lateral bending is distributed mainly within the segments, e.g. along the struts or crowns, versus at the connections between segments. Material strain and deformation during radial expansion is principally concentrated at the crown shoulders and tapered transition region with the struts. Particular closed-open-closed arrangements along the stent length are disclosed, though with fewer stent connections in the relatively 'closed' end-portions along the stent than are provided by other typically 'open' cell stents in prior use. Enhanced combinations of performance characteristics are provided regarding visibility, trackability, expansion characteristics, fatigue failures, coating integrity, and local drug delivery from the stent.
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