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Revista médica de Chile

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ANSELMI M, Mario; ACUNA C, Juan Carlos; VALLE M, Ana Del  and  GEMMATO P, Ana María. Endoscopic biliary stents for the temporary management of choledocholithiasis. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2006, vol.134, n.6, pp.721-725. ISSN 0034-9887.

Background: Endoscopic extraction of biliary tract stones is safe and effective. When the procedure is not successful, the use of a temporary stent can be a solution. Aim: To prospectively analyze the usefulness of endoscopic biliary stents in the temporary management of biliary obstruction due to choledocholithiasis. Material and methods: Analysis of 51 consecutive patients (age range 21-88 years, 34 females) with common bile duct stones that, from January 1999 to December 2001, were subjected to an endoscopic insertion of a biliary stent. Results: The indications for stent placement were a large stone in 40 patients (78%), the insecurity of a complete biliary tract cleaning in eight (16%) and technical difficulties in three (6%). Twenty seven patients (52.9%) were jaundiced and 17 (33.3%) had cholangitis. The prostheses remained in place until definitive resolution of the choledocholithiasis in 47 patients (92%) and migrated in 4 (8%). Bilirubin levels became normal in all cases with jaundice and infection resolved in all those with cholangitis. The definitive treatment of choledocholithiasis was done endoscopically in 28 patients (58%) and surgically in 20 (42%). Three patients were lost from follow up. Of these, one patient (2%) died 14 months later due to a recurrent cholangitis. The remaining two patients were asymptomatic and with the prostheses still in place 522 and 560 days post stent placement. Conclusions: When the immediate endoscopic resolution of choledocholithiasis is not possible, temporary stenting is a simple and safe therapeutic alternative that allows patients to be free of obstructive complications until the definitive treatment is carried out

Keywords : Cholangitis; Gallstones, common bile duct; Stents.

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