Objective: To review morbidity and late complications of ureteral stent insertion and to specifically evaluate hydronephrosis as a radiologic finding of obstruction in the presence of an indwelling ureteral stent. Methods: In this prospective study, we evaluated 110 stented kidneys in a group of 90 patients. Of 110 stents, 52 were left in place for 3 months, 23 for 6 months, 11 for 9 months, and 24 for up to 12 months. With the stent in place, patients were followed by plain abdominal X-ray 1 and 30 days after stenting. Further follow-up was performed through ultrasound and plain film every 3 months until scheduled date for stent removal or the appearance of complications. Results: In 11 of 110 cases (10%) there was stent fragmentation and in 9 (8.2%) stent migration. In 10 cases (9.1%), there was no change in the severity of the hydronephrosis, but because of flank pain or urinary tract infection with fever, the stents had to be removed. In 6 cases (5.4%) hydronephrosis developed or worsened after stenting. Of the 110 ureteral stents, 32.7% had to be removed because of late complications. Conclusions: Although ureteral stenting is undoubtedly an important procedure for the release of ureteral obstruction, the indications for stent insertion should be carefully considered in each patient. Late complications of ureteral stents are frequent and appear in one third of the patients. Close follow-up of stented patients is valuable in early detection of morbidity or complications, and in such cases the stent should be removed or exchanged as soon as possible. Copyright (C) 2000 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- Complications, ureteral stents