Background/Aims: When re-intervention is required due to an occluded first colorectal self-expanding metal stent for malignant colorectal obstruction, serious controversies exist regarding whether to use endoscopic re-stenting or surgery. To compare the clinical outcomes in patients who underwent stent re-insertion versus palliative surgery as a second intervention. Methods: A total of 115 patients who received either self-expandable metal stent (SEMS) insertion or palliative surgery for treatment of a second occurrence of malignant colorectal obstruction after the first SEMS placement were retrospectively studied between July 2005 and December 2009. Results: The median overall survival (8.2 vs. 15.5 months) and progression-free survival (4.0 vs. 2.7 months) were not significantly different between the stent and surgery groups (p = 0.895 and 0.650, respectively). The median lumen patency in the stent group was 3.4 months and that in the surgery group was 7.9 months (p = 0.003). The immediate complication rate after second stent insertion was 13.9% and late complication rate was observed in 12 of 79 (15.2%) patients. There was no mortality related to the SEMS procedure. The complication and mortality rates associated with palliative surgery were 3.5% (2/57) and 12.3% (7/57), respectively. Conclusions: Although there is no significant difference in the overall survival between stenting and surgery, a secondary stent insertion had a lower mortality rate despite a shorter duration of temporary colorectal decompression compared to that of palliative surgery.
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