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Dilatation / Stenting of Airways

What is it?

This is a procedure performed to enlarge and stent open airways that are abnormally narrowed. Maquarie Respiratory and Sleep has expertise in the deployment of a variety of stents, which are designed for various conditions and functions. This includes metal / nitinol stents as well as silicon stents. We also have the expertise and experience to utilise different delivery methods for the stents, including the use of both rigid and flexible bronchoscopes.

Why is it done?

  • Abnormally narrowed airways can be caused by a number of conditions including lung cancer, tuberculosis or previous trauma
  • Narrowed airways limit the free passage of air and drainage of secretions within the lung
  • This can cause breathlessness and recurrent infections in the lung
  • The narrowed airways can be dilated open and a stent inserted to maintain its patency
  • This should relieve breathlessness and reduce the risk of recurrent infections

Details of the procedure

  • Initially you will be sedated through an intravenous drip
  • After you are drowsy, a bronchoscope is passed through your mouth into your airways
  • The narrowed airway is dilated using a plastic device and stented open
  • X-ray guidance may be necessary in some cases
  • The procedure may vary slightly from person to person depending on the location of the stricture

How do I prepare for dilatation / stenting of airways?

  • Your doctor will inform you if you need to cease any medications before the procedure
  • You should have nothing to eat or drink for 4 hours prior
  • As you will undergo sedation, you should not drive or operate heavy machinery for the remainder of the day