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01.12.2017 | Research | Ausgabe 1/2017 Open Access

Patient Safety in Surgery 1/2017

A new patient safety smartphone application for prevention of “forgotten” ureteral stents: results from a clinical pilot study in 194 patients

Patient Safety in Surgery > Ausgabe 1/2017
Wilson R. Molina, Rodrigo Pessoa, Rodrigo Donalisio da Silva, McCabe C. Kenny, Diedra Gustafson, Leticia Nogueira, Mark E. Leo, Michael K. Yu, Fernando J. Kim



Approximately 12% of all ureteral stents placed are retained or “forgotten.” Forgotten stents are associated with significant safety concerns as well as increased costs and legal issues. Retained ureteral stents (RUS) often occur due to lack of clinical follow-up, communication or language barriers, and economic concerns.


We describe a multiplatform application that facilitates data collection to prevent RUS. The “Stent Tracker” application can be installed on mobile devices and computers. The encrypted and password-protected information is accessible from any device and provides information about each procedure, stent placement and removal dates, as well as product description. This multicenter retrospective study included 194 patients who underwent stent placement between July and October 2015. Nominal data was tallied and ordinal data was divided into quartiles of 25, 50, and 75%.


A total of 194 patients from three institutions underwent ureteral stent placement. Reasons for stent placement include 122 cases post ureteroscopy (63%), 8 cases post percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) (4%), 14 cases post extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (SWL) (7%), 18 cases of cancer-related ureteral obstruction (9%), 21 cases of hydronephrosis (11%), and 11 for other reasons (6%). Of these patients, only one patient was lost to follow-up (0.5%). On average, ureteral stents were removed within 14 days of placement (IQR: 8-26 days).


The “Stent Tracker” is a patient safety application that provides a secure and simplified interface, which can significantly reduce the incidence of RUS. Further developments could include automated notifications to patients and staff, color-coding, and integrated information with electronic patient charts.
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