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Eur Urol. 2008 Mar;53(3):590-6. Epub 2007 Oct 30.

Assessment of risk factors for complications of laparoscopic partial nephrectomy.

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  • 1Department of Urology, San Luigi Hospital, Orbassano, University of Turin, Italy. porpiglia@libero.it



Laparoscopic partial nephrectomy (LPN) is a technique that is emerging as an attractive option for the treatment of renal tumors <or=4 cm. We retrospectively analyzed our experience with LPN to identify patient and tumor features that correlate with a higher risk of complications.


From January 2001 to May 2007, 90 patients underwent LPN at our institution for a clinically localized renal tumor. A retrospective chart review was carried out. Clinical and pathological information were collected for each patient, including patient age and body mass index, tumor size, location and pattern of growth (cortical vs. corticomedullar), surgical approach (transperitoneal vs. retroperitoneal), warm ischemia time, technique that was used to achieve hemostasis, maximum thickness of the margin of resection, and histology. Statistical analysis (chi-square test, Fisher exact test, Mann-Whitney U test, linear regression model) was performed to test the correlation between the above-mentioned variables and the occurrence of complications.


Twenty-two patients (24.4%) had surgical and/or medical complications in our series. The only variable that was found to significantly correlate with a higher number of complications was a corticomedullar tumor growth pattern as opposed to a cortical growth pattern (p=0.02).


LPN is an attractive alternative to open partial nephrectomy for the treatment of small renal tumors. On the basis of our experience, the selection of patients with cortical renal lesions seems to be required to reduce the risk of complications and therefore maximize the advantages of this minimally invasive but challenging procedure.

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