Airway stents implantation on respiratory failure patients

Weihua Xu


Severe airway stenosis may result in respiratory failure. Airway stent implantation has been used to relieve the symptoms of airway stenosis. During stent implantation, how to provide oxygen support is more important. Up to now, there are two oxygen support methods including extrapulmonary oxygen support and intrapulmonary oxygen support. The former method involves percutaneous cardiopulmonary support (PCPS) and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO). In this way, stent implantation is more convenient because airway is not occupied by intubation tube. Furthermore, PCPS and ECMO can provide not only pulmonary but also cardiac support, which is advantageous for those patients who suffer from severe airway stenosis and cardiovascular diseases. The intrapulmonary oxygen support methods include rigid bronchoscopy and tracheal intubation attached mechanical ventilation. Rigid bronchoscopy can be used to implant silicon and metallic stents. On intubated patients, more pulmonologists have performed stent insertion via fluoroscopy with/without flexible bronchoscopy. For avoiding X-ray exposure, flexible bronchoscope passing outside endotracheal tube or ultrathin bronchoscope have been ingeniously developed to implant airway stents.

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