Laparoscopic partial nephrectomy is a minimally invasive surgical technique that involves removal of the diseased portion of a kidney while the healthy tissue is left intact. It is indicated for the treatment of small and early-stage kidney cancers that have not spread.
Laparoscopic partial nephrectomy is performed under general anaesthesia. Your surgeon makes 3 to 4 small keyhole incisions on the abdomen. A laparoscope (tube with a light and a miniature camera) is inserted to view the abdominal cavity and kidney. The camera is fixed to a video screen, which allows your surgeon to have a magnified view of the operating field. Other surgical instruments are inserted through the incisions to access the kidney. The diseased section of the kidney or the tumour are freed from the surrounding tissues and dissected. The tumour or partially dissected kidney is then placed in a plastic sack and removed through one of the incisions. The surgery may take 3 to 4 hours to perform.
Like all surgical procedures, laparoscopic partial nephrectomy may be associated with certain complications, which include:
- Injury to surrounding tissues or organs
- Urine leak
- Need for open surgery
The advantages of laparoscopic partial nephrectomy when compared to open partial nephrectomy include:
- Reduced hospital stay
- Faster recovery
- Less post-operative pain
- Smaller incisions and less scarring
Laparoscopic simple nephrectomy is indicated for benign conditions. It involves the surgical excision of the kidney and a small segment of the ureter.
Laparoscopic radical nephrectomy is performed to remove the entire kidney along with the surrounding fatty tissue, adrenal gland (hormone releasing glands that sit on top of the kidney) and lymph nodes.