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Roger Williams’ gastroenterologist first to utilize new stent technology in Rhode Island

Dr. Nabil Toubia is the first physician in Rhode Island to utilize new stent technology that helps physicians manage serious complications from pancreatitis using a minimally invasive endoscopic approach. On April 28, Dr. Toubia, a gastroenterologist at Roger Williams Medical Center, utilized the new AXIOS stent technology on a patient’s pancreas, while guided by ultrasound.

This technology has been FDA-approved and on the market since March 2016. The AXIOS System, a product of the Boston Scientific Corporation, has been cleared for endoscopic management of pancreatic pseudocysts and certain types of walled-off pancreatic necrosis.

The AXIOS system reduces the risk of leakage and migration, and provides an effective drainage system. Using the stent, physicians can treat patients endoscopically, which means it is less invasive than traditional surgical options.

“This technique for treating pancreatic pseudocysts is not new; the technology, however, is,” said Dr. Toubia. “We can now treat certain complications in the pancreas in a safer, less invasive manner and that is good news for our patients.”

This system is the first stent specifically designed for drainage of a pancreatic pseudocyst by creating a new, temporary opening between the pancreas and the gastrointestinal tract. The new technology enables physicians like Dr. Toubia to complete this procedure with just one stent, as opposed to the previous technique. This advancement allows for reduced procedural time with less manipulation and less complication.

Pancreatitis occurs when digestive fluids become activated and begin breaking down tissues while trapped inside the pancreas. Pockets of fluid trapped within pancreatic cavities, called pancreatic pseudocysts, have traditionally been treated surgically, but now this new minimally invasive endoscopic procedure is available. The AXIOS stent delivery system helps create a temporary channel between pancreatic fluid and the gastrointestinal tract while facilitating drainage of the fluid.

An affiliate of CharterCARE Health Partners, Roger Williams Medical Center is a comprehensive health care institution offering a broad range of adult health services to residents of Rhode Island and nearby Massachusetts.