Annals of Surgical Oncology

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 470–475 | Cite as

Temporary Placement of Self-Expanding Oesophageal Stents as Bridging for Neo-Adjuvant Therapy

  • Felix B. Langer
  • Sebastian F. Schoppmann
  • Gerhard Prager
  • Florian Tomaselli
  • Ursula Pluschnig
  • Michael Hejna
  • Rainer Schmid
  • Johannes Zacherl
Gastrointestinal Oncology



Placement of self-expanding stents is an effective palliation for dysphagia in non-resectable oesophageal or proximal gastric cancer. The aim of this analysis was to assess the efficacy of temporary stent placement for dysphagia relief during neo-adjuvant treatment for locally advanced disease.


A total of 38 patients scheduled for neo-adjuvant chemo(radio)therapy for locally advanced oesophageal cancer (n = 29), cardia cancer (n = 8) or subcardial gastric cancer (n = 1) underwent placement of self-expanding plastic stents (n = 13) or covered metal stents (n = 25) due to severe dysphagia and weight loss.


Instant dysphagia relief was achieved in 37 (97.4%) of 38 patients. Dysphagia scores declined from mean 3.0 ± 0.7 before stent placement to 0.6 ± 0.9 at restaging. After completion of the neo-adjuvant therapy 20 (52.6%) of the 38 patients underwent resection of the tumour, 5 patients (13.2%) underwent primary resection without receiving chemotherapy while 12 patients (31.6%) did not undergo surgery. Stent-related complications were observed as perforation (n = 1), mediastinitis (n = 1), tracheo-oesophageal fistula (n = 2), bleeding (n = 1) and jejunal perforation caused by a migrated stent (n = 1). Serum albumin significantly decreased in patients with progressive disease despite successful stenting (40.0 ± 4.9 mg/dl versus 29.7 ± 6.4 mg/dl, p < 0.05) while stable albumin levels were found in patients who underwent surgery (39.9 ± 4.3 mg/dl versus 39.1 ± 3.8 mg/dl, p = 0.484).


Placement of self-expanding stents is highly effective for instant dysphagia relief, enabling adequate oral nutrition during neo-adjuvant therapy, but is limited by a high re-intervention rate.


Stent Placement Stent Migration Prognostic Nutritional Index Stent Removal Proximal Gastric Cancer 
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Copyright information

© Society of Surgical Oncology 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Felix B. Langer
    • 1
  • Sebastian F. Schoppmann
    • 1
  • Gerhard Prager
    • 1
  • Florian Tomaselli
    • 2
  • Ursula Pluschnig
    • 3
  • Michael Hejna
    • 3
  • Rainer Schmid
    • 4
  • Johannes Zacherl
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Surgery, Division of General SurgeryMedical University of Vienna, General Hospital ViennaViennaAustria
  2. 2.Department of SurgeryKrankenhaus der Elisabethinen LinzLinzAustria
  3. 3.Department of Internal Medicine, Division of OncologyMedical University of ViennaViennaAustria
  4. 4.Department of Radiotherapy and RadiobiologyMedical University of ViennaViennaAustria

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