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Original research
Comparison of drug-coated balloon with conventional balloon for angioplasty in symptomatic intracranial atherosclerotic stenosis


Background Drug-coated balloon (DCB) angioplasty has been studied for reducing the occurrence of restenosis after treatment for intracranial atherosclerotic stenosis (ICAS), but no comparison has been published of the use of drug-coated and non-coated balloons in angioplasty for ICAS. We aim to compare the safety and efficacy of DCB angioplasty with conventional balloon (CB) angioplasty for the treatment of symptomatic ICAS.

Methods One hundred cases with symptomatic ICAS treated with DCB (n=49) and CB (n=51) angioplasty were retrospectively analyzed. 1:1 propensity score matching (PSM) was completed to eliminate bias in the patients selected for further analysis. The periprocedural events and follow-up outcomes between the two groups were compared.

Results There were 32 cases in each group after PSM. Technical success (<50% residual stenosis) was achieved in 30 cases (93.8%) in the DCB group and in 28 cases (87.5%) in the CB group. The rates of stroke or mortality within 30 days were 3.1% in the DCB group and 6.3% in the CB group (p=1). The incidence of restenosis in the DCB group (6.3%) was significantly lower than that in the CB group (31.3%) (p=0.01).

Conclusions Compared with CB angioplasty, DCB angioplasty can effectively reduce the incidence of restenosis. Further studies are needed to validate the role of DCB angioplasty in the management of symptomatic ICAS.

  • Angioplasty
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Stenosis
  • Stroke
  • Balloon

Data availability statement

Data are available upon reasonable request. Data are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.

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