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Stent for a blocked duodenum

If the pancreatic cancer is blocking the duodenum, you may be able to have a stent put in to keep the duodenum open. This allows food to flow from the stomach into the duodenum. It should stop you being sick, and you should start to feel like eating again.

How is the stent inserted?

A flexible tube with a camera on the end, called an endoscope, is put in through your mouth and down into the duodenum. A fine wire is then used to guide the stent into place inside the duodenum.

You will have a sedative, which will make you very drowsy and relaxed. The procedure takes 30-40 minutes.

A duodenal stent insertion

What happens afterwards?

You will be told when you can drink again. This is usually once the sedative has worn off. Once you are able to drink without problems, you will be able to eat. It may take several days to build back up to eating solid food. You may need to stay in hospital overnight.

Will I feel better?

After the stent has been put in you should find that your symptoms improve. For example, you should stop feeling sick and find it easier to eat.

The stent should help food move more easily through your duodenum. But you will need to be careful about what you eat, to make sure the stent doesn’t get blocked.

If you have any questions or concerns about having a stent put in, speak to your medical team. You can also speak to our specialist nurses on our free Support Line.

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Published February 2017

Review date February 2019

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