Fahad Malik, MD1, Marina Kim, MD2, Mukul Arya, MD3
1Richmond University Medical Center, Staten Island, NY; 2New York Methodist Hospital, Brooklyn, NY; 3New York Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, Brooklyn, NY
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Introduction: Benign esophageal anastomotic leaks can be effectively treated by the placement of esophageal stents. Endoscopic therapy for esophageal anastomotic leaks remains non-standardized. Partially covered self-expanding metal stents (PSEMS) are superior to fully covered stents in the treatment of anastomotic leaks by providing a better seal and therefore promoting quicker healing with shorter time to oral intake. However, the removal of partially covered SEMS is technically challenging due to these stents’ inherent risk of stimulating mucosal hyperplasia and without special technique will lead to esophageal perforation, avulsion or fistula formation during attempted removal. Generally, anastomotic leaks require at least 4 weeks of stent dwelling for clinical success with an average treatment time of 6 - 8 weeks with recommendations for stent removal by 3 months.
Case Description/Methods: A 69 year old man with esophageal adenocarcinoma of the distal esophagus status post neoadjuvant chemoradiation followed by Ivor-Lewis esophagectomy with pyloroplasty presented to the hospital with hematemesis and found to have developed two anastomotic leaks within one month of surgery. He was treated with PSEMS measuring 12.5cm x 20mm (25mm at ends). Three months after placement, elective EGD revealed previously placed stent covering the anastamosis with tissue ingrowth at the uncovered ends. Coagulation using argon plasma at 0.8 liters/minute and 55 watts was performed to free the uncovered ends of the stent by destruction of ingrown tissue. The proximal end was freed, however, some tissue remained over the distal end even after extensive attempts at coagulation and debridement. Two days later, the procedure was repeated with continued fulguration to ablate the remaining ingrown tissue at the uncovered ends using argon plasma and a soft over-the-scope cap was used to remove the necrosed tissue. Stent was eventually removed with rat-tooth forceps.
Discussion: There are many described methods for partially covered esophageal stent removal. We propose a safe and effective method for the removal of partially covered esophageal SEMS with the use of Argon Plasma Coagulation, a soft over-the-scope cap and rat-tooth forceps after an extended stent dwelling time of three months. With this efficient, safe and effective method of stent removal, it is essential that the use of partially covered esophageal SEMS be standard of care in the temporary management of anastomotic leaks.
Citation: Fahad Malik, MD; Marina Kim, MD; Mukul Arya, MD. P1155 - ARGON PLASMA COAGULATION-BASED REMOVAL OF PARTIALLY-COVERED ESOPHAGEAL SELF-EXPANDING METAL STENT FOR ANASTOMOTIC LEAKS DESPITE EXTENDED EMBEDMENT - CHALLENGING CURRENT STANDARDS OF CARE. Program No. P1155. ACG 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting Abstracts. San Antonio, Texas: American College of Gastroenterology.