Nephrostomy / ureteric stenting

Urine is normally carried from the kidneys to the bladder through long, narrow tubes called ureters.

A nephrostomy is the insertion of a drainage catheter through the skin, and in the kidney. This allows the diversion of urine to occur from the kidney, to a urinary bag. It is inserted when the ureter has been blocked, causing urine to backflow, rather than drain through to the bladder. It is often a temporary measure.

A ureteric stent is the insertion of a thin plastic tubing in to the ureter. This is to ensure the ureter remains patent, therefore allowing urine to drain from the kidney, down in to the bladder. It can be inserted for short, and long term periods of time, depending on the cause of the blockage.