Topic: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

hi, I posted yesterday about my mom having a metal stent placed this Wed. after becoming very sick with her what was infected and clogged plastic one.
Anyway...only 3 days later she's in the ER with colongitis. How can a stent become infected and clogged so quickly? Does anyone else have any similar story's like this? My mom, starting Saturday can't keep anything down, even ice chios. WhTs going on? I've been reading about PTBD catheders and flushes, any experience with thus?
I'm so scared it's more than just a clogged stent. She does have metastasized, unresectable tumer.

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

I am sorry your Mom is having so much trouble with the stents.  My Mom had a few of them mostly metal, one plastic, but each time it needs to be changed out it's another proceedure and perhaps all this works on the body as something foreign being introducted and makes the body more prone to infection.   My Mom passed at 76. Six months after first sign of illness.    When she was first diagnosed suregons said there was no spread.  They said she should have chemo and then review the case again for possible surgery.  Well after the first chemo treatment that was it.  She went downhill. It began with elevated liver numbers, weight loss, jaundice.  She would get filled up fast after eating. She began to have low grade fevers which they said came with the illness.    I cared for her at home.  Loved her very much.  Miss her every day.  She was very active before the illness.  Danced, cooked, worked in the yard.  We are all here for you.  It's all very confusing and hard to figure out HOW are loved ones got the cancer in the first place.  Do your best to have the doctors explain what is happening.  Keep after them.  Bless you.

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help


I have a metal stent which clogged a couple of weeks ago.  Went my ambulance to Mayo and they did the ERCP about 5 hours after I arrived.  Felt so much better!

I was discourage because it had only been 6 months since my last clog.  The time before that was 15 months and 5 months before that time.  Anyway, the GI doc told me they sort of expect it in 6 months time.  Also, my oncologist who has always told me to do anything I wanted, told me not to go on another cruise this week when my husband mentioned that we should.  (We had just gotten back from a cruise when this happened).  My oncologist said he hadn't read any studies on it, but from observation they can clog up again in two weeks time maybe because there is some irritation with the procedure.  There's also the risk of infection after the procedure.

I was diagnosed with stage 4 unresectable cc July 09.  One thing I've learned is that you can get very sick very fast and yet feel very good 3 days later.  You have to have prompt and good medical care , though. 

Hope your mom is feeling better soon.

God bless you and your mom,

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

Thanks Kathy
We were just told that her tumor from today's ct scan dhows the tumor is much larger and definetltly in the liver. Not what we wanted to hear of course. They will replace the stent yet again tomorrow morning.
Have you bern on chemo since 09'?
I'm so scared with this news they tell us to not even bother with chemo.
We haven't spoken to her oncologist yet.

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

Amy....cholangitis is quite common with this cancer and always is treated with antibiotics; as Kathy has mentioned one can go from being ill to feeling better within a short period of time. 
Amy, I agree with Sharon in that you should have a frank discussion with the physician. Are you the only one tending to your Mom's needs or is another family member involved in her care?  Two people always are better in receiving difficult medical information - what one does not understand the other one will grasp and vice versa.
Please, keep us posted.


Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

Hi Amy,

I have replied to your other post.  I went through the same with my Dad.  Antibiotics will sort the infection out, they may do IV antibiotics to get into the body quicker.  My Dads tumor blocked his first stent but in the end they put another 2 stents in, all metal.  My Dad was then kept on permanent low dose ciprofloxin tablets to avoid infections. These worked for him. He also drank lots and lots to help flush the bile and slush through.  After  a stent procedure blood clots can also block the stents, they may be able to flush these out and then the bile will flow again.  It takes a while for the bilirubin level to drop as the ducts can  be inflammed after a stent procedure, don't be disheartened if it rises a few days after, my Dads always did, but then it would start dropping.

Take care


Devoted Daughter to the most wonderful Dad a girl could ask for.  Sadly lost his battle on 19.02.11, peacefully in the arms of Mom and I.  As requested by Dad "we will keep on smiling".

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

Hi Amy,

I'm sorry to hear what you and your mum are going through right now. I know how you feel right now as I felt the same after hearing difficult news with my dad. Have your mums doctors managed to get the news stent placed for your mum yet? Please let us know how your mum gets on and know that we are all here for you.



Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

Thank you all for taking the time to reply to me. When you in the hospital do confused you reach out to everyone and I really appreciate the replays.

To catch up, first and foremost all along we have been told mom has bile duct cancer, however, today the oncologist seems very confident it's Gallbladder cancer that has metastisized to the stomach and the original tumor has grown and is in the liver and bike duct now. Do that's horrible news if course.
The decent news is that her white count is normal now and she finally got 3 metal stents in the bile duct just now and I pray this eleviates some if her pain and nausea and she can EAT finally!
Oncology says she needs to recover from this, be able to eat and be infection free so they can attempt chemo.
I'm beside myself with fear of what's to come and find myself praying she can have chemo and it will do somet shrinking if the rumors to let her be here longer feeling good! Man, this is just so wrong:(

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

The chemotherapy will not be that much different than in treating the bile duct cancer. Once the cancer metastasized to other parts of the body.system treatment is the only way,at this point, for treatment.
Palliative treatment is, I think, the intention of the oncologist at this point.
God bless.

Please know that my personal opinion is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. If  provided, information are for educational purposes.Consult doctor is a MUST for changing of treatment plans.

10 (edited by Deb_ Tue, 01 May 2012 01:47:30)

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help

I hope and pray that the infection clears Amy and that her strength picks up. It's a very difficult time. Try to make the most of this time with her and although the temptation is to run around talking to doctors and nurses and doing various jobs for your Mom (and that's important too of course), do try your utmost too to just talk to her and hold her and just be with her in case the infection doesn't clear or she doesn't pick up strength. This time now is precious.

Pain management is vital at this point so if she is in any pain or discomfort then that is unacceptable and staff must intervene. You might consider talking to a hospice team even just to discuss symptom management. They are so amazing at ensuring that patients are pain free and relaxed. It's something to consider. I don't want to scare you. I know the word 'hospice' is not an easy one to hear but it's never too soon to contact them and they are so amazing at helping people with such serious illness.

I'm thinking of you Amy. Your Mom is blessed to have a daughter who cares as much as you.

Deb xxx

"The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares." [Henri Nouwen]

Re: Infected/clogged metal stent, please help fingers are crossed for the stents to do their job.  I wish for your Mom to have relief from her symptoms so that she may be ready for treatment.
Amy, although there are similarities with cholangiocarcinoma gallbladder cancer is a completely different cancer.  In addition to our forum you might also want to search out forums within the gallbladder community, as it may focus on areas unknown to our community.   
Others may be equally as good, but this one caught my eye:

Please keep us posted.  We care.