Posttuberculosis Tracheobronchial Stenosis: Use of CT to Optimize the Time of Silicone Stent Removal
Radiology: Volume 263: Number 2-May 2012
Akash Verma, MD Hye Yun Park, MD So Yeon Lim,MD Sang-Won Urn, MD Won-Jung Koh, MD Gee Young Suh, MD Man Pyo Chung, MD 0 Jung Kwon, MD Hojoong Kim, MD
Purpose: To evaluate whether air pockets (tracheobronchial air columns in the space between the outer surface of the stent and the adjacent airway wall) discernible at computed tomography (CT) can help optimize the time of stent removal in patients with posttuberculosis tracheobronchial stenosis (PTTS).
Materials and Methods: The study was approved by the institutional review board, and informed consent was obtained from all patients. Data from 41 patients (five men, 36 women) with a median age of 39 years (range, 21-64 years) who underwent silicone stent placement owing to PTTS, followed by CT and stent removal 6-12 months after clinical stabilization, were investigated retrospectively. Two radiologists determined whether the extent of air pockets on CT scans was associated with clinical success, which was defined as maintenance of a prosthesis-free airway for more than 2 years after stent removal. Radiologic features were compared for outcome by using a Wilcoxon two-sample test or Fisher exact test.
Results: Stents were removed successfully in 31 patients (76%). Air pockets longer than 1 cm or longer than 2 cm were associated with successful stent removal (P = .04 and P = .006, respectively). The sensitivity and specificity of air pocket length in the prediction of successful stent removal were 84% and 50%, respectively, for air pockets longer than 1 cm and 68% and 70% for air pockets longer than 2 cm.
Conclusion: The extent of air pockets at chest CT shows correlation with the success of stent removal, indicates regression of stenosis, and may help guide the optimal time for stent removal.