Randomized trials have demonstrated the superiority of coronary stents in combination with a platelet-focused pharmacologic approach in percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). However, nationally representative data examining the impact of these technologies on patient outcomes and costs remain scarce. This study sought to determine the real-world impact of changes in the use of stents and anticoagulant agents in PCI on outcomes and costs. A nationally representative sample of 37,088 patients who underwent PCI from October 1995 to October 1997 was identified from in-patient hospital claims data acquired from HCIASachs. Utilization of coronary stents, antiplatelet and anticoagulant agents, and outcome measurements of in-hospital death, coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), repeat PCI, bleeding, and costs were analyzed in 6-month intervals. Acute events (death, urgent CABG, or PCI) decreased (p <0.001), whereas use of stents, abciximab, or both, increased (p <0.001). Dosages of heparin and bleeding complications declined significantly (p <0.001) over the 2-year period. Heparin dosages were higher in patients who experienced bleeding or death than in those who did not (p <0.001). The average hospital length of stay decreased significantly (p <0.001), largely driven by a reduction in time between the procedure and hospital discharge. By the end of the study period, bleeding was the most frequent (5.5%) complication of PCI and was associated with considerable costs, adding $10,225 to baseline costs.