Comparison of Laparoscopic Radical Renal Surgery in Morbidly Obese and Non-obese Patients
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BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Laparoscopic radical nephrectomy is rapidly becoming accepted as the preferred management of low-stage renal masses not amenable to partial nephrectomy. Minimally invasive surgery is advantageous to decrease perioperative and postoperative morbidity and allows patients to return to normal activities faster. Obesity has been a relative contraindication to this technique, and these patients have traditionally undergone open surgery. We present a review of 23 morbidly obese patients in comparison with patients who were not morbidly obese who underwent radical laparoscopic nephrectomy and nephroureterectomy at our institution. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Hospital charts between April 2001 and October 2003 were reviewed for morbidly obese patients undergoing transperitoneal laparoscopic renal surgery who were compared with age- and sex-matched control patients who underwent laparoscopic renal surgery in the same institution for similar indications. The data were collected at the time of the surgery. RESULTS: Twenty-three patients with a mean BMI of 42.2 kg/m2 underwent successful transperitoneal laparoscopic surgery. The mean specimen mass was 865 g, which was significantly larger than in the control group. The mean operative time was 200 minutes, which was around half an hour longer than in the matched group. The mean estimated blood loss was 243 mL, which was comparable to that of the controls. There were two perioperative complications, and the mean hospital stay was 4.5 days, 1 day longer than in the control group. CONCLUSIONS: Laparoscopic transperitoneal renal surgery is technically more difficult in morbidly obese patients but is a feasible, effective, minimally invasive method of removing renal malignancies. It offers decreased respiratory and cardiac morbidity in this higher-risk population. This study showed a complication profile similar to that in non-obese patients.
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