World Journal of Surgery

, Volume 43, Issue 3, pp 862–869 | Cite as

Outcome of Self-Expanding Metal Stents in the Treatment of Anastomotic Leaks After Ivor Lewis Esophagectomy

  • Patrick Sven Plum
  • Till Herbold
  • Felix Berlth
  • Hildegard Christ
  • Hakan Alakus
  • Marc Bludau
  • De-Hua Chang
  • Christiane Josephine Bruns
  • Arnulf Heinrich Hölscher
  • Seung-Hun ChonEmail author
Original Scientific Report (including Papers Presented at Surgical Conferences)



Esophageal anastomotic leakages after Ivor Lewis esophagectomy are severe and life-threatening complications. We analyzed the outcome of using self-expanding metal stents (SEMS) in the treatment of postoperative leakage after esophagogastrostomy.


Seventy patients with esophageal anastomotic leakage after Ivor Lewis esophagectomy for esophageal cancer who had received SEMS treatment between January 2006 and December 2015 at our clinic were identified in this retrospective study. The patients were analyzed according to demographic characteristics, risk factors, leakage characteristics, stent characteristics, stent-related complications, sealing success rate and mortality.


Over a 10-year period, 70 patients received SEMS as treatment for postoperative anastomotic leakage after esophagectomy. Technical success of esophageal stenting in anastomotic leakage was achieved in 50 out of 70 cases (71.4%). Sealing success rate was 70% (n = 49) with a median treatment of 28 days (range 7–87). In 20 patients (28.6%), stent-related complications, such as stenosis, dislocation, leakage persistence, perforation or esophagotracheal fistula occurred after the SEMS treatment. Sixty-one patients (87.1%) survived SEMS treatment of esophagogastric anastomotic leakage. Mean follow-up for all patients was 38 months (IQR 10–76), and no significant difference was found in a comparison of the long-term survival rate between patients with successful and unsuccessful SEMS treatment.


The management of esophageal anastomotic leaks after Ivor Lewis esophagectomy with SEMS is effective, safe and technically feasible. Aggressive non-surgical management should be considered when developing a treatment plan for stenting.



The authors thank Lisa-Marie Teubler for proofreading the current manuscript. Furthermore, the authors also thank Helmut Schäfer for his technical expertise and his guidance as interventional endoscopist.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have nothing to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Sven Plum
    • 1
  • Till Herbold
    • 2
  • Felix Berlth
    • 1
  • Hildegard Christ
    • 3
  • Hakan Alakus
    • 1
  • Marc Bludau
    • 1
  • De-Hua Chang
    • 4
  • Christiane Josephine Bruns
    • 1
  • Arnulf Heinrich Hölscher
    • 5
  • Seung-Hun Chon
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of General, Visceral and Cancer SurgeryUniversity Hospital of CologneCologneGermany
  2. 2.Department of General, Visceral and Transplantation SurgeryRWTH AachenAachenGermany
  3. 3.Institute of Medical Statistics and BioinformaticsUniversity of CologneCologneGermany
  4. 4.Institute of RadiologyUniversity Hospital of CologneCologneGermany
  5. 5.Center for Esophageal and Gastric SurgeryAGAPLESION Markus KrankenhausFrankfurtGermany

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