Objective: The aim is to assess the effectiveness of a biodegradable antireflux ureteral stent with heparin coating in a comparative study (BraidStent®-H) in an animal model for the treatment of iatrogenic ureteral perforation. Materials and Methods: A total of 24 female pigs underwent initial endoscopic, nephrosonographic, and contrast fluoroscopy assessment of the urinary tract. Afterward, unilateral iatrogenic perforation in proximal ureter model was performed. Then the animals were randomly assigned to Group-I, in which a double-pigtail stent was placed for 6 weeks, or Group-II, in which a BraidStent-H a biodegradable heparin-coated stent was placed. Follow-up assessments were performed at 1 and 6 weeks and 5 months. Results: In terms of therapeutic effectiveness, complete resolution was observed in 95.8% of Group-I animals and 87.5% in Group-II. No animals in Group-II showed vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) during the study; statistical significance was observed at 1 and 6 weeks versus Group-I. All stents in Group-II degraded without producing obstructive fragments and allowed distal ureteral peristalsis. Heparin coating was not efficient to reduce asymptomatic bacteriuria between groups. Pathologic assessment did not show any significance in the global score, but did in the "fibrosis in muscular layer" parameter, at the ureteral perforation healing area; Group-II showed higher healing quality. Conclusions: The biodegradable intraureteral BraidStent®-H is highly effective for the minimally invasive treatment of ureteral perforation, since it displays controlled and predictable degradation, avoiding the development of VUR as well as irritation of the bladder trigone. Unfortunately, heparin coating was not effective in avoiding stent-associated bacteriuria.
Keywords: antireflux; biodegradable ureteral stent; biofilm; heparin coated; iatrogenic ureteral perforation; morbidity.