Esophagorespiratory fistulae due to esophageal carcinoma: palliation with a covered Gianturco stent

Radiology. 1996 Apr;199(1):65-70. doi: 10.1148/radiology.199.1.8633174.


Purpose: To evaluate therapeutic effects and complications of a covered Gianturco stent for esophagorespiratory fistulae.

Materials and methods: Of 95 patients with esophageal carcinomas, 10 had esophagorespiratory fistulae and were treated with a silicone-covered Gianturco stent. The authors retrospectively assessed patients' food intake capacity and delayed problem of the stent.

Results: All fistulae were occluded without immediate complications. Two patients could swallow all foods; four, most foods; three soft foods; and one, only liquids. Clinical problems occurred between 1 and 24 weeks in four patients: reopened fistula (n = 1), recurrent fistula (n = 1) (both patients were successfully treated with another esophageal stent), and dyspnea (n = 2) due to tracheal compression by stent and tracheal invasion by tumor (one patient was treated with a tracheal stent).

Conclusion: A silicone-covered modified Gianturco stent is effective for palliation of esophagorespiratory fistulae caused by esophageal cancer. Simultaneous use of a tracheal stent is recommended for extrinsic tracheal narrowing by the proximal tip of the stent and invasion by tumor.

MeSH terms

  • Bronchial Fistula / diagnostic imaging
  • Bronchial Fistula / etiology*
  • Bronchial Fistula / therapy*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / complications*
  • Eating
  • Equipment Design
  • Esophageal Fistula / diagnostic imaging
  • Esophageal Fistula / etiology*
  • Esophageal Fistula / therapy*
  • Esophageal Neoplasms / complications*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Palliative Care / methods*
  • Radiography
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Silicones
  • Stents*
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula / diagnostic imaging
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula / etiology*
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula / therapy*


  • Silicones