ABBOTT PARK, Ill., July 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Abbott (NYSE: ABT) today announced that the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) in Japan has approved the XIENCE Xpedition™ Everolimus Eluting Coronary Stent System for the treatment of coronary artery disease (CAD), the most common form of heart disease. i XIENCE Xpedition is supported by the robust clinical evidence of the XIENCE family of drug eluting stents and features a new delivery system designed to navigate smoothly through clogged blood vessels in the heart during an angioplasty procedure, particularly in patients with complicated heart vessel anatomy. Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in Japan, accounting for nearly one-third of all deaths in the country. ii XIENCE Xpedition's enhanced deliverability, combined with the broadest size matrix in the Japanese market, including a unique 3.25 mm diameter, will help physicians in Japan address a wide range of patients with CAD. "The deliverability with XIENCE Xpedition is impressive, helping physicians navigate with ease through complex blockages inside the heart vessels," said Masahisa Yamane, M.D., director, Cardiovascular Division, Saitama Sekishinkai Hospital, Saitama, Japan. "This approval offers physicians an important new treatment option to address a growing health concern in Japan; we look forward to the positive impact of this product in Japanese patients with coronary heart disease." Multiple proprietary design features make XIENCE Xpedition a unique and effective option for treating blockages in vessels of the heart. XIENCE Xpedition employs a specialized balloon that helps physicians open difficult-to-treat blockages and ensures the stent fits securely against the walls of the blood vessel once implanted. The catheter that carries the stent has a low-profile design that allows it to move smoothly through the body and heart to the site of the blockage. The stent design is based on Abbott's MULTI-LINK pattern, which has a long heritage of successful stent design and is proven to impart strength and stability to the stent.