Procedure: Laparoscopic Donor Nephrectomy

Jason M. Farrow, Ruben Vasquez, Jason L. Zappia, Amitha C. Sundaram, Asif A. Sharfuddin, John A. Powelson, William C. Goggins, Chandru P. Sundaram

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Minimally invasive approaches for laparoscopic donor nephrectomy are necessary to limit surgical morbidity, and technical challenges differ from those encountered during other laparoscopic renal surgeries. Presented here is a step-by-step guide for laparoscopic donor nephrectomy - focusing on pure laparoscopic and hand-assisted techniques. Both straight laparoscopic and hand-assisted nephrectomies were performed in healthy donors who met transplantation criteria in terms of global health and psychologic well-being. Patient positioning, trocar placement, surgical steps, incision closure, and postoperative care are reviewed. Standard equipment used to complete this procedure is itemized. This guide outlines indications, preoperative preparation, and procedural steps for laparoscopic donor nephrectomy. The techniques and the evolution thereof represent our experience since 2002 for 510 cases. The attached videos demonstrate a high-volume surgeon's typical approach while factoring in anatomical variation. In both cases, the donor nephrectomies were without incident and the patient's postoperative courses were without complication. A basic framework for donor nephrectomy is presented highlighting surgical steps we believe to be essential for graft preservation and ultimately effective transplantation. Although no two cases are the same, systematic approaches will allow for timely case completion, fewer complications, and better donor/recipient outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S75-S82
JournalJournal of Endourology
Issue numberS2
StatePublished - Sep 2021


  • laparoscopic donor nephrectomy
  • laparoscopic renal surgeries
  • minimally invasive surgery


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