A guidewire loaded stent for delivery through a catheter is described herein. The stent delivery assembly can deliver and place a stent within tortuous regions of the body which are accessible to guidewires but inaccessible to stenting catheters. The assembly comprises a guidewire covered in part by a retractable sheath and a radially expandable stent near or at the distal end of the guidewire. The whole assembly is advanced through conventional catheters or it may be used alone. In either case, when the stent is adjacent to a treatment site within the body, the sheath is retracted proximally to expose the stent for radial expansion into contact with the vessel wall. Radio-opaque marker bands are optionally located on either side or both sides of the stent on the guidewire body to aid in visual placement. The assembly can optionally include an expandable balloon on the guidewire for different treatment modalities.