A stent is a hollow tube that maintains patency until healing can take place or an obstruction is relieved. It allows urine to flow from the kidney to the bladder.
Indications for stenting include:
Frequently asked questions:
Most patients do not have pain after the stent is removed, but occasionally you can develop pain or colic after it is removed. This may occur either shortly after the stent is removed, but also can occur one or two hours later. Usually the pain is self-limited and will resolve within several hours.
If you are on tamsulosin (Flomax) prior to the stent removal, we recommend continuing it for 48 hours after the stent is removed. In addition, taking an ibuprofen tablet the morning prior to the removal of the stent may help to prevent pain after removal.
Stents are usually left for one week after stone surgery although occasionally they are left longer.
Some patients have stents placed that are to remain in place for the long term. These stents are usually changed at approximately 3 month intervals.
IT IS VITAL TO ALWAYS RETURN TO EITHER HAVE THE STENT REMOVED OR CHANGED WHEN SCHEDULED. STENTS WILL BEGIN TO FORM STONES ON THEM OVER TIME AND CAN BECOME DIFFICULT TO REMOVE IF NOT CHANGED REGULARLY.
Yes. The lower end of the stent is coiled in the bladder and can irritate it, causing symptoms of urinary frequency and urgency.
Usually the stents are removed with local anesthetic instilled into the urethra prior to the procedure. This is done in the Urology Clinic and most patients tolerate the stent removal well. However if you have specific concerns please discuss it with your physician.
After numbing gel is placed into the urethra, a flexible scope is passed into the bladder, the stent is capture, and then removed. Typically the entire procedure takes less than one minute.
The stent is soft and flexible and will move with your body.
The stents have a coil on each end, the upper end in the kidney and the lower end in the bladder. The coils usually keep the stent in place, but they can, on rare occasion, either slip out of the urethra or pull up into the kidney.
This is very rare. If the stent comes out, please rinse it with water and place it in a ziplock bag and bring it with you to your appointment. Your physician will then confirm that the entire stent is out. Please notify your physician’s office as soon as possible if your stent does fall out.
Yes, most patients will have blood intermittently with a stent in place. Usually it is most severe the first few days after surgery, but it can persist the entire time that the stent is in place.