Medtronic ( MDT) shares fell Thursday even as the company's balloon catheter received approval from the Food and Drug Administration. Before the bell Thursday, the company announced that the FDA gave approval for its Sprinter balloon, which is a catheter with a balloon at the tip used to open clogged arteries, in a variety of lengths and diameters. In a balloon angioplasty procedure, the Sprinter is inserted into the femoral artery and inflated, allowing doctors to insert stents to ensure the artery stays open. Each year, more than 1 million balloon angioplasties are performed in the U.S. with 2.3 million performed worldwide. "The Sprinter balloon, available as the Sprinter Rapid Exchange balloon outside the United States, has been the most successful balloon we have ever introduced, and it has received enormous praise and acceptance throughout Europe and Japan," said Scott Ward, president of Medtronic Vascular. In reaction to the news, shares of the company slid 33 cents, or 0.7%, to $48.77. On Wednesday, Medtronic shares fell 1.2% after
the company issued guidance that was essentially in line with current Wall Street expectations.