Management of malignant oesophageal obstruction with self-expanding metallic stents

Br J Surg. 1998 Feb;85(2):264-6. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2168.1998.00562.x.


Background: The use of self-expanding metal stents for palliation of malignant dysphagia is increasing. Experience in 70 patients was reviewed with respect to the value of stenting and management of the complications encountered.

Methods: Oesophageal stents were inserted in 70 patients (42 men) of mean age 73 years with malignant oesophageal obstruction. Data regarding stent insertion and degree of dysphagia were gathered prospectively.

Results: Seventy-six stents were placed in 70 patients. By the end of the study 57 patients had died and 13 were still alive. Three patients died within 3 days of stent insertion and dysphagia was relieved in 64 of the 67 patients remaining. Stent migration, tumour ingrowth and overgrowth, and food impaction were encountered during follow-up in eight patients.

Conclusion: Insertion of self-expanding metal stents for the palliation of malignant oesophageal obstruction is a successful therapy which can be carried out with relative ease. Palliation of dysphagia with an appropriate stent can be expected in up to 95 per cent of patients.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Deglutition Disorders / etiology
  • Deglutition Disorders / surgery
  • Equipment Contamination
  • Esophageal Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Esophageal Stenosis / surgery*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Foreign-Body Migration
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Palliative Care / methods
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recurrence
  • Stents*
  • Treatment Outcome