Drug-eluting balloon angioplasty versus uncoated balloon angioplasty for the treatment of in-stent restenosis of the femoropopliteal arteries

Ahmed Kayssi, Wissam Al-Jundi, Giuseppe Papia, Daryl S. Kucey, Thomas Forbes, Dheeraj K. Rajan, Richard Neville, Andrew D. Dueck

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Background: Stents are placed in the femoropopliteal arteries for numerous reasons, such as atherosclerotic disease, the need for dissection, and perforation of the arteries, and can become stenosed with the passage of time. When a stent develops a flow-limiting stenosis, this process is known as "in-stent stenosis." It is thought that in-stent restenosis is caused by a process known as "intimal hyperplasia" rather than by the progression of atherosclerotic disease. Management of in-stent restenosis may include performing balloon angioplasty, deploying another stent within the stenosed stent to force it open, and creating a bypass to deliver blood around the stent. The role of drug-eluting technologies, such as drug-eluting balloons (DEBs), in the management of in-stent restenosis is unclear. Drug-eluting balloons might function by coating the inside of stenosed stents with cytotoxic chemicals such as paclitaxel and by inhibiting the hyperplastic processes responsible for in-stent restenosis. It is important to perform this systematic review to evaluate the efficacy of DEB because of the potential for increased expenses associated with DEBs over uncoated balloon angioplasty, also known as plain old balloon angioplasty (POBA). Objectives: To assess the safety and efficacy of DEBs compared with uncoated balloon angioplasty in people with in-stent restenosis of the femoropopliteal arteries as assessed by criteria such as amputation-free survival, vessel patency, target lesion revascularization, binary restenosis rate, and death. We define "in-stent restenosis" as 50% or greater narrowing of a previously stented vessel by duplex ultrasound or angiography. Search methods: The Cochrane Vascular Information Specialist searched the Cochrane Vascular Specialised Register, CENTRAL, MEDLINE, Embase, and CINAHL databases and the World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform and ClinicalTrials.gov trials registers to November 28, 2017. Review authors also undertook reference checking to identify additional studies. Selection criteria: We included all randomized controlled trials that compared DEBs versus uncoated balloon angioplasty for treatment of in-stent restenosis in the femoropopliteal arteries. Data collection and analysis: Two review authors (AK, WA) independently selected appropriate trials and performed data extraction, assessment of trial quality, and data analysis. The senior review author (AD) adjudicated any disagreements. Main results: Three trials that randomized a combined total of 263 participants met the review inclusion criteria. All three trials examined the treatment of symptomatic in-stent restenosis within the femoropopliteal arteries. These trials were carried out in Germany and Austria and used paclitaxel as the agent in the drug-eluting balloons. Two of the three trials were industry sponsored. Two companies manufactured the drug-eluting balloons (Eurocor, Bonn, Germany; Medtronic, Fridley, Minnesota, USA). The trials examined both anatomical and clinical endpoints. We noted heterogeneity in the frequency of bailout stenting deployment between studies as well as in the dosage of paclitaxel applied by the DEBs. Using GRADE assessment criteria, we determined that the certainty of evidence presented was very low for the outcomes of amputation, target lesion revascularization, binary restenosis, death, and improvement of one or more Rutherford categories. Most participants were followed up to 12 months, but one trial followed participants for up to 24 months. Trial results show no difference in the incidence of amputation between DEBs and uncoated balloon angioplasty. DEBs showed better outcomes for up to 24 months for target lesion revascularization (odds ratio (OR) 0.05, 95% confidence Interval (CI) 0.00 to 0.92 at six months; OR 0.24, 95% CI 0.08 to 0.70 at 24 months) and at six and 12 months for binary restenosis (OR 0.28, 95% CI 0.14 to 0.56 at six months; OR 0.34, 95% CI 0.15 to 0.76 at 12 months). Participants treated with DEBs also showed improvement of one or more Rutherford categories at six and 12 months (OR 1.81, 95% CI 1.02 to 3.21 at six months; OR 2.08, 95% CI 1.13 to 3.83 at 12 months). Data show no clear differences in death between DEBs and uncoated balloon angioplasty. Data were insufficient for subgroup or sensitivity analyses to be conducted. Authors' conclusions: Based on a meta-analysis of three trials with 263 participants, evidence suggests an advantage for DEBs compared with uncoated balloon angioplasty for anatomical endpoints such as target lesion revascularization (TLR) and binary restenosis, and for one clinical endpoint - improvement in Rutherford category post intervention for up to 24 months. However, the certainty of evidence for all these outcomes is very low due to the small number of included studies and participants and the high risk of bias in study design. Adequately powered and carefully constructed randomized controlled trials are needed to adequately investigate the role of drug-eluting technologies in the management of in-stent restenosis.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberCD012510
JournalCochrane Database of Systematic Reviews
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 26 2019
Externally publishedYes


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