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Laparoscopic nephrectomy, ex vivo excision and autotransplantation for complex renal tumors.

  • Author(s): Meng, Maxwell V
  • Freise, Chris E
  • Stoller, Marshall L
  • et al.


In many patients partial nephrectomy is the preferred alternative to radical nephrectomy for upper urinary tract cancers. We describe the use of laparoscopic nephrectomy, ex vivo excision and reconstruction, and autotransplantation to expand the realm of minimally invasive, nephron sparing surgery to the most complex renal tumors.

Materials and methods

In our cohort undergoing renal surgery 2 patients had a solitary kidney with renal tumors not considered amenable to in situ partial nephrectomy. After transperitoneal laparoscopic nephrectomy ex vivo tumor excision and renorrhaphy were performed. The kidney was transplanted to the ipsilateral iliac vessels through the Gibson extraction incision.


Indications for surgery were high grade urothelial carcinoma within a caliceal diverticulum and a central 5 cm renal cell carcinoma. Mean nephrectomy, cold ischemic and transplantation times were 4.5, 2 and 3.7 hours, respectively. No intraoperative or postoperative complications were noted. Hospitalization was 12 and 6 days, respectively. At 20 and 12 months of followup each patient remained off dialysis without evidence of recurrence.


Despite experience with conventional nephron sparing surgery some cases may be more appropriate for ex vivo excision and reconstruction. In these situations the minimally invasive approach provides a kidney suitable for renal autotransplantation, while simultaneously decreasing patient morbidity. This novel approach to complex renal tumors is feasible when one applies principles of laparoscopic donor nephrectomy and possesses experience with renal transplantation.

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