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Abbott Labs says FDA approves new stent

NORTH CHICAGO, Ill. (AP) -- Abbott Laboratories Inc. said Wednesday the Food and Drug Administration approved its Absolute Pro stent system, which is designed to treat arterial blockage that affects the lower body.

Abbott said the stent is designed to expand to treat difficult lesions. Stents are mesh-wire tubes used to prop open arteries after they have been cleared of fatty plaque.

The Absolute Pro stent was approved as a treatment for iliac artery disease. The condition affects arteries that start in mid-abdomen, where the aorta splits into four branches. When those arteries are narrowed by plaque, it reduces blood flow to the lower body and the legs. Abbott said that can cause chronic pain and reduce a patient's ability to walk.

Shares of Abbott Laboratories lost 9 cents to $56.26 in Wednesday trading.