We present a review of recent literature to summarize the most recent evidence on the use of ureteral stents, including the use of different materials and treatment of stent-related symptoms.
Metal stents are able to resist lumen occlusion from extrinsic compression allowing longer indwelling time and making them an option for long-term use. Biodegradable stents have the advantage not to require secondary procedures; however, they have not proven their safety in the clinical setting yet. Coated and drug-eluting stents seem to be promising concepts to prevent stent-related symptoms, but still have to be considered as experimental approaches. The most commonly used stent type is the standard double J stent, named for its J-shaped curled ends and manufactured from polyurethane, silicone or various polymers.
After more than 5 decades of using stents there are promising advancements in their designs and materials aiming to maintain their patency and control stent-related symptoms. Long-term metallic stents and coated stents are good options that should be considered in selected patients. Biodegradable stents are promising developments but not sophisticated yet. Pain medication, alpha-blocker and antimuscarinic medications are still frequently used and necessary. Treatment combinations can result in better outcomes than monotherapy.
aDepartment of Urology, Klinikum Wels-Grieskirchen, Wels, Austria
bDepartment of Urology, University Health Network
cDepartment of Surgical Oncology, Division of Urologic Oncology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Correspondence to Jaime O. Herrera-Caceres, MD, Department of Surgical Oncology, Urologic Oncology, University Health Network, University of Toronto, 700 University, Sixth Floor, Toronto, ON, Canada M5G 1Z5. Tel: +1 647 883 9158; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org