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Ann Surg Oncol. 2007 Dec;14(12):3392-400. Epub 2007 Jul 31.

Laparoscopic adrenalectomy for isolated adrenal metastasis.

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Department of Surgery, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021, USA.



Use of laparoscopy for isolated adrenal metastases is controversial. The aims of this study were to characterize patients with isolated adrenal metastases; compare operative characteristics of the laparoscopic adrenalectomy (LA) versus open adrenalectomy (OA) approach; and compare long-term oncological and surgical outcomes.


Our adrenal resection database (1995-2006) identified 63 OA and 31 LA cases done for isolated adrenal metastases. Subset analysis was performed for all patients from isolated lung metastases (n = 39) and for all tumors smaller than 4.5 cm (n = 49).


Overall, local recurrence was 17%, median survival 30 months and 5-year estimated survival 31%. The only independent predictor of survival for all (n = 94) was adrenal tumor size less than 4.5 cm (P = 0.01). When comparing LA with OA, no differences in local recurrence, margin status, disease-free interval or overall survival were observed for the entire group, or for patients with metastases only from lung cancer (n = 39) or for those with tumors smaller than 4.5 cm (n = 49). LA provided significantly shorter operative time (175 vs 208 min, P = 0.04), lower estimated blood loss (EBL) (106 vs 749 cc, P < 0.0001), shorter length of hospital stay (2.8 vs 8.0 days, P < 0.0001) and fewer total complications (P < 0.0001).


LA is equivalent to OA in terms of margin status, local recurrence, disease-free interval and overall survival. LA for metastatic adrenal lesions is safe, with equivalent long-term oncological outcomes providing the additional benefits of a minimally invasive technique. LA can be recommended as an appropriate initial approach for isolated adrenal metastases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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