The ductal stretching technique: an endoscopic-assisted technique for removal of submandibular stones. Academic Article uri icon


  • Objective: The purpose of this study was to describe an innovative surgical technique for the removal of posterior and hilar stones of the submandibular salivary duct. Methods: Between 1999 and 2005, 172 patients who had sialolithiasis of the submandibular duct were treated primarily by transoral incision and marsupialization of the duct and salivary gland. The ductal stretching technique involved endoscopic location of the stone, incision of the oral mucosa above the duct, isolation of the duct from the surrounding tissues, stretching of the duct, ductal incision above the calculus, sialolithotomy, and insertion of a drain. Results: Forty-one patients with stones located in the posterior aspect of the duct were symptom-free and stone free after the procedure. One hundred and five patients with stones located in the hilum were treated with a success rate of 98%. Twenty-six patients with multiple stones in the hilar region were treated with a success rate of 81%. The overall success rate of the procedure was 96%. In 48 patients (28%), an additional undetected stone was diagnosed by endoscopy after the removal of the stone in the hilum. In 62 patients (36%), strictures were diagnosed endoscopically posterior to the stone. Lingual nerve paresthesia occurred in one patient, who recovered completely. Conclusion: The ductal stretching technique is recommended as the procedure of choice in cases with posterior and hilar stones more than 5 mm in diameter to avoid surgical removal of the salivary gland.

publication date

  • January 1, 2007