Outcomes of outpatient ureteral stenting without fluoroscopy at Groote Schuur Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa
Background. Ureteral stenting is generally a theatre-based procedure that requires a multidisciplinary team and on-table imaging. Limited hospital bed numbers and theatre time in our centre in Cape Town, South Africa, have led us to explore an alternative approach.
Objectives. To see whether outpatient insertion of ureteric stents under local anaesthesia without fluoroscopy was a possible and acceptable alternative to theatre-based ureteral stenting.
Methods. Ureteral stenting (double-J stents and ureteric catheters) was performed with flexible cystoscopy under local anaesthesia and chemoprophylaxis, but without fluoroscopic guidance, in an outpatient setting. Every patient had an abdominal radiograph and an ultrasound scan of the kidney after the procedure to confirm stent position.
Results. Three hundred and sixteen procedures (276 double-J stents and 40 ureteric catheters) were performed in 161 men and 155 women. The overall success rate for the procedures was 85.4%, independent of gender (p=0.87), age (p=0.13), type of device inserted (p=0.81) or unilateral/bilateral nature of the procedure (p=1.0). Procedures with a successful outcome were performed in a significantly (p<0.0001) shorter median time (10 minutes (interquartile range (IQR) 5 - 15)) than failed procedures (20 minutes (IQR 10 - 30)). Patients with a
pain score of >5 experienced a significantly (p=0.02) greater proportion of failure (27.3%) than patients with a pain score of ≤5 (12.5%). Difficulties were encountered in 23.7% of procedures, with a significantly higher proportion being registered in failed interventions compared with successful ones (82.6% v. 13.7%; p<0.0001).
Conclusions. The procedure was easily mastered and technically simple, and represents savings in cost, time and human resources in our setting.