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J Endourol. 2009 Jun;23(6):907-11. doi: 10.1089/end.2008.0608.

Single center experience with percutaneous and laparoscopic cryoablation of small renal masses.

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Department of Urology, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Virginia 23510, USA.



While partial nephrectomy remains the gold standard for the management of most small renal masses, increasing experience with renal cryoablation has suggested a viable alternative with a favorable morbidity profile and good efficacy. We report intermediate-term oncologic outcomes from a single-center experience with laparoscopic and percutaneous renal cryoablation.


We performed a retrospective review of our laparoscopic renal cryoablation (LRC) and percutaneous renal cryoablation (PRC) experience between January 2003 and April 2007. Patients with at least 12 months of follow-up were included in the analysis. Follow-up consisted of imaging and laboratory studies at regular intervals. Persistent mass enhancement or interval tumor growth was considered a treatment failure.


Sixty-six patients (44% women/56% men; 42% African-American/58% Caucasian/other; mean body mass index, 29.7) with 72 tumors underwent either LRC (n = 52) or PRC (n = 20) with a mean follow-up of 30 months (median 25.1 mos; range 13-63 mos). Average patient age was 66.5 years (range 34-82 yrs). Mean tumor size was 2.33 cm (range 1-4.6 cm). Comorbid conditions were prevalent: 76% hypertension, 36% hyperlipidemia, 24% chronic kidney disease, 29% diabetes mellitus, 36% tobacco use, and 32% heart disease. RESULTS of pretreatment biopsy were 62% renal-cell carcinoma and 38% benign or nondiagnostic. Overall cancer-specific and cancer-free survival were 100% and 97%, respectively. There were two treatment failures (3.8%) in the LRC group and five primary failures in the PRC group (25%) (P = 0.015), four of which were salvaged with repeated PRC with no evidence of recurrence at 6 to 36 months of follow-up. There has been no significant local or metastatic progression.


LRC and PRC achieved good oncologic control with minimal morbidity at a mean follow-up of 30 months in a patient cohort characterized by numerous comorbid conditions. PRC had a significantly higher primary treatment failure rate than LRC, but re-treatment offered salvage oncologic control with no significant complications.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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