Purpose: Laparoscopic radical nephrectomy has been shown to be less morbid than traditional open radical nephrectomy. The long-term oncological effectiveness of laparoscopic radical nephrectomy remains to be established. Materials and Methods: At 3 centers patients undergoing laparoscopic radical nephrectomy before November 1, 1996 with pathologically confirmed renal cell carcinoma were identified. A representative group of patients undergoing open radical nephrectomy for clinical T1, T2 lesions was also identified. Staging, operative details and postoperative course were reviewed. Followup consisted of review of clinical, laboratory and radiological records. Kaplan-Meier analysis was performed. Results: The study included 64 patients treated with laparoscopic and 69 treated with open radical nephrectomy with respective average ages of 60.6 and 61.3 years at surgery. On preoperative imaging open lesions were larger (6.2 cm., range 2.5 to 15) than laparoscopic radical nephrectomy lesions (4.3 cm., range 2 to 10, p < 0.001). Pathology reports revealed no difference in specimen weight (425 and 495 gm., p = 0.146) or average Fuhrman grade (1.88 and 1.78, p = 0.476) between laparoscopic and open radical nephrectomy, respectively. Median followup was 54 months (range 0 to 94) for laparoscopic and 69 months (range 8 to 114) for open radical nephrectomy. Kaplan-Meier analysis with log rank comparison revealed 5-year recurrence-free survival of 92% and 91% for laparoscopic and open radical nephrectomy, respectively (p = 0.583). At 5 years cancer specific survival was 98% and 92% (p = 0.124), and nonspecific survival was 81% and 89% (p = 0.260) for laparoscopic and open radical nephrectomy, respectively. Conclusions: Laparoscopic radical nephrectomy confers long-term oncological effectiveness equivalent to traditional open radical nephrectomy.
- Carcinoma, renal cell