Soft-Tissue-Anchored Transcutaneous Port for Long-Term Percutaneous Transhepatic Biliary Drainage
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A transcutaneous port (T-port) has been developed allowing easy exchange of a catheter, which was fixed inside the device, using the Seldinger technique. The objective of the study was to test the T-port in patients who had percutaneous transhepatic biliary drainage (PTBD).
The T-port, made of titanium, was implanted using local anesthesia in 11 patients (mean age 65 years, range 52–85 years) with biliary duct obstruction (7 malignant and 4 benign strictures). The subcutaneous part of the T-port consisted of a flange with several perforations allowing ingrowth of connective tissue. The T-port allowed catheter sizes of 10 and 12 Fr.
All wounds healed uneventfully and were followed by a stable period without signs of pronounced inflammation or infection. It was easy to open the port and to exchange the drainage tube. The patient’s quality of life was considerably improved even though several patients had problems with repeated bile leakage due to frequent recurrent obstructions of the tubes. The ports were implanted for a mean time of 9 months (range 2–21 months). Histologic examination in four cases showed that the port was well integrated into the soft tissue. Tilting of the T-port in two cases led to perforation of the skin by the subcutaneous part of the ports, which were removed after 7 and 8 months.
The T-port served as an excellent external access to the biliary ducts. The drainage tubes were well fixed within the ports. The quality of life of the patients was considerably improved. Together with improved aesthetic appearance they found it easier to conduct normal daily activities and personal care. However, the problem of recurrent catheter obstruction remained unsolved.
KeywordsTranscutaneous port Access Biliary Soft tissue anchored Percutaneous
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