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20.02.2019 | Original Article | Ausgabe 8/2019

Digestive Diseases and Sciences 8/2019

Risk Factors for the Development of Stent-Associated Cholangitis Following Endoscopic Biliary Stent Placement

Digestive Diseases and Sciences > Ausgabe 8/2019
Brendan T. Everett, Shelly Naud, Richard S. Zubarik
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Background and Aim

To elucidate the overall risk and risk factors for developing cholangitis following biliary stent placement by endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) and to determine the clinical outcomes of these individuals.


We performed a retrospective review of 796 patients who had undergone 1127 ERCPs with biliary stent placement between 2007 and 2015 at a single tertiary care center. There were 91 episodes of stent-associated cholangitis (SAC) during the study period. Data obtained through the medical records included ERCP indication, patient factors (biliary anatomy, demographics, and comorbidities), stent characteristics (material, length, and design), change in serum bilirubin, stent indwelling time, rates and etiologies of bacteremia, and the mortality rate.


Those with SAC were more likely to have an anatomic biliary stricture (13.1% vs. 2.3%, p < .0001), with hilar and multiple strictures having the highest risk (19.1% vs. 11.6%, p = .04). The ERCP indication of malignant biliary obstruction was associated with higher rates of SAC (15.6% vs. 3.4%, p = < .0001). Rates of SAC were higher in those who failed to normalize total bilirubin (16.9% vs. 7.8%, p = .0005), and these episodes occurred earlier compared to those who normalized total bilirubin (median 30.5 days vs. 140.5 days, p < .0001).


Patients at increased risk of SAC include those with an anatomic stricture, malignant biliary obstruction, and those who fail to normalize total bilirubin after biliary stent placement. Future protocols should be designed to reduce the risk of cholangitis in these populations.

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