Background: Tracheobronchial stenting is performed increasingly often. Fluoroscopic control, which leads to significant radiation exposure for patients and staff, is recommended for the placement of metal stents.
Methods: All consecutive patients referred to two airway centers in need of airway stenting who received stents (Ultraflex; Boston Scientific, Natick, MA) underwent placement using endoscopic guidance only. All data were collected in an ongoing continuous database.
Results: One hundred stents were placed in 96 patients for central airway obstruction, and the data were reviewed. Stents were placed in all locations within the central airways for a variety of indications but mainly for malignant obstruction. No complications occurred, and all stents were placed satisfactorily.
Conclusion: At centers with dedicated airway teams, Ultraflex stents can be quickly and safely inserted without the need for fluoroscopy. This saves radiation exposure to patients and to staff and may lead to a more cost-effective procedure.