Ureteral or kidney stents are soft and hollow type of plastic tubes, which doctors place on a temporary basis within the ureter to facilitate drainage across a stone or to increase the healing speed of a patient after he/she undergoes a ureteral stone surgery.
When Are Kidney Stents Needed?
Surgeons use stents for many reasons in patients dealing with the problem of kidney stones. They help in the reduction of pain from stones, when infection prevails to allow drainage or at the time, when a stone avoids kidney to work in a proper way. Moreover, stents placed after surgical procedures, as in the case of ureteroscopy, help in the healing process and avoid swelling of the ureter.
How Long Does Kidney Stent Placement Procedure Take?
Surgeons require only half an hour time to place a stent within the kidney of a patient. However, the exact duration may depend on various other factors. Doctors place stents at the time of surgeries by simply sliding them on a soft guide wire placed at the above portion of the ureter that acts as a tube to drain the kidney.
- Application of a cystoscope to locate the orifice of ureter, at which the urine drains within the bladder (Cystoscope acts a camera to place within the bladder)
- Passing a soft and a flexible type of wire called guide wire within the orifice of one’s ureter
- Application of X-ray umage to monitor the respective guide wire, as it advances in the upward direction of the ureter
- In case of any blocking stone, doctors inject a contrast fluid with the help of a hollow and a soft temporary type of stent. Contrast fluid is responsible for outlining the ureter to bring improvement in the guidance. In addition, you will find fluid as pushing the stone in backward direction towards the ureter.
- Advance the respective guide wire entirely within the kidney
- Threading of a ureteral stent on the guide wire and push it in the upward direction in the patient’s kidney by the help of a pusher.
- Remove the nearby guide wire once the stent goes in its correct position. Stent comes with a natural curl at two different ends to keep it in the proper place, while the curl develops after the removal of respective guide wire.
- Confirm about the proper placement of the stent by the help of X-rays and based on its visualization within the bladder.
How is a Kidney Stent Removed?
Urologists may remove kidney stents in two different ways. Sometimes, they attach a string to the end of the ureter stent. This string later on, comes out from the urethra of patients i.e. the tube, where they urinate. Even string may pull on the ureter stent to remove it. In cases, when urologists do not attach a string, they insert a small camera i.e. a cystoscope in the urethra of patients after administering a suitable numbing medication. Cystoscope thus advanced in the bladder to allow grasping of the stent by the help of respective instrument and later on, removed.
How Long Can A Kidney Stent Stay Inside A Patient?
Most of the times, stents only remain for a period of 3 months. Reason behind is that if urologists left it for a long time, it may result in the formation of stones directly on it and removal of such stones becomes further difficult.
What are the Symptoms of Having a Stent in a Kidney?
A few patients experience very less discomfort with stents, while others consistently report complex symptoms, which may be either annoying or too severe that urologists forced to remove the stent.
- How is a Ureteral Stent Removal Procedure Done?
- What is the Purpose of a Stent for Kidney Stones?
- What Happens When You Have A Stent Put In?