Urinary Tract "Double J" Stent
What is it?
A thin, hollow tube placed inside the ureter during surgery to ensure drainage of urine from the kidney into the bladder. J shaped curls are present at both ends to hold the tube in place and prevent migration, hence the description "Double J stent".
It allows the kidney(s) to drain urine by temporarily relieving any blockage, or to assist the kidney(s) in draining stone fragments freely into the bladder if definitive kidney stone surgery is carried out.
What symptoms will you notice?
This tube has curls at either end which keeps the stent from moving. The lower curl can irritate the bladder and make you feel the need to go to the toilet all the time to empty your bladder. It can also cause moderate discomfort in the kidney region on urination, and at times you may notice blood in the urine.
None of these symptoms are harmful and your body gets use to the stent over time. Simple analgesics may be helpful in controlling the discomfort (Panadol or Nurofen). All the symptoms resolve after stent removal once definitive treatment is completed.
What if there is a string present?
Sometimes there is a string attached to the stent coming from your urinary passage and taped to the nearby skin. Your surgeon will let you know if this occurs after your surgery. It is often performed when definitive stone treatment is carried out and allows the stone fragments to drain out freely from the kidney. This is for your benefit as it allows stent removal in our office by simply pulling on the string (7 days) without the need for further surgery. You will be advised when it can be taken out.
If you accidentally dislodge the stent, you will notice being constantly incontinent of urine. If this occurs, you can safely remove the stent by pulling on the string. Call the office the next day to inform us.
Stents are used in temporary situations and must be removed from the body. Occasionally, some events occur where communication and follow up is lost and you must be aware that these stents should be removed within six (6) months from the date of insertion. In most cases they will be removed well before that time. It is important that you remember you have a stent and not forget about it.
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