Palliation of gastric outlet obstruction and proximal small bowel obstruction with self-expandable metal stents: a single center series

J Clin Gastroenterol. 2005 Feb;39(2):124-8.


Background: Self-expandable metal stents (SEMS) are being increasingly used to palliate malignant stenoses of the gastric outlet and proximal small bowel. Accordingly, we reviewed our experience in this setting.

Methods: Patients with gastric outlet or proximal small bowel stents were identified by reviewing hospital charts. Outcome criteria included survival data, need for reintervention, and clinical improvement.

Results: A total of 52 SEMS were placed in 36 patients with nonesophageal upper GI stenosis. Initial stent placement was successful in 92% and clinical improvement documented in 75%. Mean survival of patients who eventually died was 3.5 months. Seven patients are alive (mean follow-up, 5.0 months). Stent dysfunction occurred in 36% and required subsequent interventions. Biliary obstruction was documented in 50% of patients, 12 of whom had previously undergone biliary stenting and 5 who needed subsequent biliary decompression.

Conclusions: Enteral stent placement has been reported to be an effective alternative for palliation of high-risk surgical patients with malignant gastric outlet and small bowel obstruction. Considering the short life expectancy of these patients and significant complications including stent migration, perforation, biliary obstruction, and need for subsequent endoscopic, radiologic and surgical interventions, the authors suggest that this procedure be performed in experienced centers on selected patients only and that biliary decompression be ensured early.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Duodenal Neoplasms / complications
  • Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal / methods*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gastric Outlet Obstruction / etiology
  • Gastric Outlet Obstruction / mortality
  • Gastric Outlet Obstruction / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Obstruction / etiology
  • Intestinal Obstruction / mortality
  • Intestinal Obstruction / surgery*
  • Jejunal Diseases / etiology
  • Jejunal Diseases / mortality
  • Jejunal Diseases / surgery*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Palliative Care / methods*
  • Prosthesis Design
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Stents*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / complications
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Outcome