Duodenal Stent Insertion
An alternative to a stomach bypass operation is the insertion of a stent (a small metallic mesh tube), which holds the sides of the duodenum open in a similar fashion to a stent when it is inserted through a blockage in the bile duct. The aim of putting in a stent is to allow food and other substances to pass through the stomach and relieve your nausea and vomiting.
Where will I have a stent put in?
The procedure will be performed in a room in an X-ray department or endoscopy suite.
How long will it take to do?
The procedure will take approximately 30 minutes to perform.
Will this procedure work?
Stents can be placed successfully in about 94% of patients.
You must not eat or drink anything for several hours before the stent is inserted (your medical team will tell you when to stop eating and drinking). If your vomiting has been severe, you may already have a naso-gastric tube in place, so your stomach can be kept drained.
You will be taken to the X-ray department or endoscopy suite, in your bed ready for you to have your intravenous sedation. When you are feeling sleepy, the doctor will pass an endoscope and put the stent through the blockage using other specialised equipment. When it is all over, you will remain in the department until you are more awake and then return to the ward.
When can I get home?
You will be able to go home when you feel ready. Usually, this is within a few days of the procedure.
Are there any complications?
Like any operation there is a slight risk of complications happening during or after the procedure. Complications linked with stent insertion include:
- Fluid getting into the lungs during the procedure.
- Puncture of the digestive tract.
- The stent moving.
- The stent causing an unwanted opening in the digestive tract.
Eating and drinking after the insertion of a stent
Because the stent doesn’t move and is about 3 to 4 inches long there is a tendency for solid food to get stuck, and consequently rather than returning to a normal diet your will be encouraged to take nourishing fluids and soft foods to take to prevent the stent becoming blocked with food particles. Your dietitian can advise you on what the best food choices are, to avoid problems.