Protect Your Stent

Protect Your Stent


A stent is a wire cage that holds the blood vessel open.


About Your Stent

You have _____ stent(s) placed in the blood vessel(s) of your:

  • ___ brain
  • ___ heart
  • ___ kidney
  • ___ leg
  • other ____________________________

Your stent type(s): ___ bare metal or ____ drug releasing. 


Medicines to prevent clotting of the stent

Antiplatelet medicines prevent platelets in the blood from clumping or clotting to block the stent. These medicines include:

  • Clopidogrel, brand name Plavix
  • Prasugrel, brand name Effient
  • Ticagrelor, brand name Brilinta
  • Ticlopidine, brand name Ticlid

The amount of time you are on this medicine will depend on your stent and your condition.

Aspirin helps to keep your blood from clotting. You need to take aspirin for the rest of your life to protect your stent from clotting. 


Risk of bleeding or clotting of stent

  • Taking these medicines to protect your stent from clotting puts you at risk for more bleeding if you have a cut or surgery.
  • Not taking these medicines puts you at risk for your stent to clot and block blood flow which could cause serious injury or death.
  • Always check with the doctor who placed the stent before you stop taking your antiplatelet medicine or aspirin.


Protect yourself

  • Check with your doctor who put the stent in before you stop taking your antiplatelet medicine or aspirin. 
  • If you have bleeding that you cannot control or is severe, call the doctor who started the antiplatelet medicine or go to the nearest emergency room.
  • Know where your stent or stents are in your body and what medicines you are taking.
  • Carry a card in your wallet or purse that has the information written down about your care and treatment, so you have it with you.
  • If you have a history of heart failure, heart attack, stroke or stent in your heart, you should avoid use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen sodium (Aleve). These drugs may increase your risk of another heart attack or stroke. Use acetaminophen (Tylenol) for pain, fever, colds, headaches as needed.
  • Be sure to tell all of your doctors, including your eye doctor and dentist, that you have a stent. Tell them you are taking antiplatelet medicine or aspirin. 
  • Aspirin therapy should not be stopped if you have a stent unless the surgeon and the doctor who placed the stent agree to stop it.


© 2012 – July 25, 2019, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

This handout is for informational purposes only. Talk with your doctor or healthcare team if you have any questions about your care. For more health information, call the Library for Health Information at 614-293-3707 or email: