This study is concerned with the wave reflection properties of arterial stenoses. Two theoretical models have been developed for deriving the reflection coefficient: a linear model resulting from the linearization of the pressure drop-flow equation and an indirect, quasi-nonlinear model, based on the separation of pressure waves into their forward and backward running components proximal and distal to the stenosis. The linear method gave consistently lower values for the reflection coefficient when compared to the quasi-nonlinear model. In vitro experiments in elastic tubes showed that the reflection coefficient is strongly dependent on stenosis severity, mean flowrate, and the elastic properties of the proximal unobstructed artery. For critical stenoses the reflection coefficient is frequency and pulsatility independent. The results suggest that hemodynamically nonsevere stenoses may cause significant wave reflections.