Purpose: To evaluate the effect of statin treatment on strut coverage after drug-eluting stent (DES) implantation. Materials and Methods: In this study, 60 patients were randomly assigned to undergo sirolimus-eluting stent (SES) or biolimus-eluting stent (BES) implantation, after which patients were randomly treated with pitavastatin 2 mg or pravastatin 20 mg for 6 months. The degree of strut coverage was assessed by 6-month follow-up optical coherence tomography, which was performed in 52 DES-implanted patients. Results: The percentages of uncovered struts were 19.4±14.7% in pitavastatin-treated patients (n=25) and 19.1±15.2% in pravastatin-treated patients (n=27; p=0.927). A lower percentage of uncovered struts was significantly correlated with a lower follow-up low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol level (r=0.486; p=0.009) and a greater decline of the LDL cholesterol level (r=-0.456; p=0.015) in SES-implanted patients, but not in BES-implanted patients. In SES-implanted patients, the percentage of uncovered struts was significantly lower among those with LDL cholesterol levels of less than 70 mg/dL after 6 months of follow-up (p=0.025), but no significant difference in this variable according to the follow-up LDL cholesterol level was noted among BES-implanted patients (p=0.971). Conclusion: Lower follow-up LDL cholesterol levels, especially those less than 70 mg/dL, might have a protective effect against delayed strut coverage after DES implantation. This vascular healing effect of lower LDL cholesterol levels could differ according to the DES type.
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