SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 19 July 2019

The Quest for Fatigue-Resistant Nitinol for Medical Implants


This article reviews the use of nitinol endovascular devices and the effects of biomechanics, design, and nitinol processing and microstructural purity on fatigue and fracture. Nitinol self-expanding stents have shown an improvement in the effectiveness of treatment of femoral arterial disease with a restenosis rate as low as 17.9 % and patency rates of more than 85 % at 18 months. Nevertheless, follow-up procedures show stent fracture rates of up to 52 % with some stent designs and nitinol source material. This article will review the improvements in nitinol stent technology due to: (1) better understanding of the in vivo biomechanical deformation dynamics and (2) ingenuity in stent design improvements in the understanding of nitinol fatigue, including effects of thermomechanical processing, prestrain, and “micropurity.”

Author Information

Pelton, Alan, R.
G. Rau Inc., Santa Clara, CA, US
Pelton, Sean, M.
G. Rau Inc., Santa Clara, CA, US
Jörn, Tim
G. Rau Inc., Santa Clara, CA, US
Ulmer, Jochen
Euroflex, GmbH, DE
Niedermaier, Dave
Euroflex, GmbH, DE
Plaskonka, Katrazyna
G. Rau Inc., Santa Clara, CA, US
LePage, William, S.
University of Michigan, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, Ann Arbor, MI, US
Saffari, Payman
Engage Medical Device Services, Inc., Irvine, CA, US
Mitchell, M., R.
Mechanics and Materials Consulting, LLC, Flagstaff, AZ, US
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Developed by Committee: E08
Pages: 1–30
DOI: 10.1520/STP161620180041
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-7678-2
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-7677-5