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Percutaneous transhepatic biliary stent placement in the palliative management of malignant obstructive jaundice: initial experience in a tertiary center in Ghana

Sarkodie, B. D., Ohene-Botwe, B. ORCID: 0000-0002-0477-640X & Brakohiapa, E. K. K. (2020). Percutaneous transhepatic biliary stent placement in the palliative management of malignant obstructive jaundice: initial experience in a tertiary center in Ghana. Pan African Medical Journal, 37, pp. 1-7. doi: 10.11604/pamj.2020.37.96.20050


INTRODUCTION: one of the mainstays of management of malignant biliary obstruction is the decompression of the biliary system and its associated obstructive symptoms. Non-surgical palliative treatment such as percutaneous transhepatic biliary stenting is desirable in many selected patients. However, this service is often not available in many resource-limited countries. We share our initial experience of percutaneous transhepatic biliary stenting for the management of malignant biliary obstruction in our first set of patients with surgically non resectable malignant biliary obstruction in Ghana.

METHODS: percutaneous transhepatic biliary stenting was performed on the first 23 consecutive patients at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital. The procedure served as the first palliation for malignant obstruction through interventional radiology. Medical records as well as serum levels of total bilirubin (TBil), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) were used to assess the efficiency of the intervention. Microsoft Excel 2010 was used to analysis the data. RESULTS: most patients had resolution of jaundice with marked improvement in liver function and resolution of the itching associated with obstructive jaundice. During the follow-up of cases, one major complication of hemoperitoneum occurred requiring laparotomy. No other major complications such as bile leakage or death occurred. Four (4) patients had sepsis, which was managed.

CONCLUSION: the introduction of the intervention in Ghana has proven to valuable for palliative drainage and relief of obstructive symptoms, hence contributing to better patient management. It is relatively safe with minor complications among Ghanaians with non-resectable obstructive symptoms.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: ©Benjamin Dabo Sarkodie et al. Pan African Medical Journal (ISSN: 1937-8688). This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution International 4.0 License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Publisher Keywords: Ghana; Percutaneous; obstructive jaundice; palliative; stent; Adult; Aged; Bile Duct Neoplasms; Drainage; Female; Follow-Up Studies; Ghana; Hospitals, Teaching; Humans; Jaundice, Obstructive; Liver Function Tests; Male; Middle Aged; Palliative Care; Stents; Treatment Outcome
Subjects: R Medicine > RL Dermatology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Midwifery & Radiography
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