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Keywords:

  • Ureteric stent;
  • double-pigtail;
  • patient tolerance;
  • pain score

Objective

To determine the symptoms of and factors predicting the tolerance to double-pigtail ureteric stents, and the development of tolerance with time.

Patients and methods

The study included 39 patients (median age 49.0 years, range 26–74; 24 men and 15 women) who were treated in our department for ureteric obstruction caused by benign conditions, excluding pregnancy and associated open surgery. All patients received a polyether-urethane double-pigtail ureteric stent (7 F, 28 cm long). Tolerance to the procedure was assessed using a questionnaire and a 10-cm linear visual analogue scale (VAS) at 24 h and again one week after placement, and on the day before stent removal.

Results

From the end of the first week to before removal of the stent, fewer patients reported dysuria, haematuria and having recourse to painkillers than during the first week. However, analysis of variance for repeated measures showed no significant difference between the VAS scores for first day, the first week and the day before removal, either overall or stratified by gender (P=0.15). A factorial analysis of variance analysing the VAS score for the first week as a function of gender, age and type of occupation (sedentary or mobile occupation) showed a significant effect only for gender (P=0.005) and gender-age interaction (P=0.02): VAS scores were higher in men and particularly in younger men.

Conclusion

Almost all patients with short-term placement of indwelling double-pigtail ureteric stents have untoward symptoms. Although some symptoms, e.g. dysuria and haematuria, significantly improve with time, the general tolerance remains unchanged. Tolerance in men, and particular in younger men, was significantly poorer.