Stents work much the same way in women as they do in men. A stent is usually placed at the site of a severely blocked lesion in the coronary arteries. The stent is placed after the artery is opened using balloon angioplasty. The purpose of a stent is to help keep the artery open by providing support to the artery. The main difference in women is that their arteries are generally smaller than men. Their artery may be too small for a stent.