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Balloon Shaft Fracture: A Nightmare Scenario in the Setting of Percutaneous Coronary Intervention.

These images illustrate an attempt to pull back the balloon of an implanted proximal stent swiftly (before it was completely deflated) just following unplanned disengagement of the guiding catheter from the right coronary ostium. This maneuver resulted in abrupt balloon shaft fracture (outside the guiding catheter), leading to a freely swinging shaft appearance in the descending aorta. Unfortunately, several attempts to retrieve the swinging fragment of the shaft failed. Moreover, intracoronary snare technique in an effort to grasp the distal portion of the shaft also failed. Finally, the shaft fragment was surgically removed along with a bypass graft operation for the severely stenotic circumflex artery.

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