Managing Malignant Colorectal Obstruction with Self-Expanding Stents. A Closer Look at Bowel Perforations and Failed Procedures

J Gastrointest Surg. 2016 Sep;20(9):1643-9. doi: 10.1007/s11605-016-3186-z. Epub 2016 Jun 24.


Stent treatment of large bowel obstruction is still controversial. There are concerns regarding complications, particularly bowel perforation, as well as long-term outcome in curable patients. Through a 10-year retrospective study, we have evaluated efficacy, complications, delay in surgical interventions and stent patency in cases of palliative treatment. We treated 183 patients, 85 as bridge to surgery and 98 as definitive, palliative treatment. At presentation, 58 % of patients had advanced local or metastatic disease. Seventeen patients required more than one stent insertion. The total number of procedures was 213. We recorded technical and clinical success or failure, complications, necessity of restenting or surgical intervention, mortality and stent patency in the palliation group. Stenting was clinically successful in 89 % of the bridge to surgery group and 86 % of the palliative group. Complications occurred in 7 %, including 12 perforations. Six patients suffered an early perforation, of which two died. Half of the six late perforations were silent. Procedure related mortality was 1 %. The clinical success rate was high in both the palliative and bridge to surgery setting. The complication rate was low, and the sum of early and late perforations was 5.6 %. Procedure related mortality was low.

Keywords: Colorectal cancer; Complications; Outcome measures; Stent treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / complications
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / surgery
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Obstruction / etiology
  • Intestinal Obstruction / therapy*
  • Intestinal Perforation / etiology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Palliative Care / methods
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Self Expandable Metallic Stents / adverse effects*
  • Treatment Outcome