Organ Preserving Treatment

When you have been diagnosed with a tumor of the kidney, a number of minimally invasive laparoscopy treatments are available at the Department of Urology. Laparoscopic treatment is less painful, requires a shorter hospital stay and has a faster recovery time than traditional kidney surgery.

You may be a candidate for a surgery in which only the tumor part of the kidney is removed and the rest of the kidney is preserved. Use of this procedure depends on the size of the tumor, the location of the tumor and other medical factors. For removal of part of the kidney, two minimally invasive laparoscopy procedures are available.

Partial Nephrectomy

Partial nephrectomy removes only the cancerous part of the kidney, leaving the rest of the organ in place. Depending on the location and size of your tumor, the laparoscopic approach may be a valuable treatment option for you. Laparoscopic partial nephrectomy is also available.

In laparoscopy, three small incisions are made into the abdomen to allow small surgical instruments to enter to abdomen. The portion of the kidney to be removed is cut and taken out through one of the small incisions. No muscle is cut so that recovery is faster and less painful than with traditional options. An overnight hospital stay is required.


For some patients with small tumors (smaller than 3 centimeters) on the outer border of the kidney, cryoablation may be a valuable treatment option. Laparoscopy is used to reach the tumor on the surface of the kidney. Under laparoscopy and ultrasound control, the tumor is frozen, eventually killing the tumor cells. An overnight stay in the hospital is needed.

Laparoscopic Kidney Removal

If your tumor requires that your kidney be completely taken out, laparoscopy may be a less invasive treatment option for you. The kidney with its surrounding fat tissue (and if needed, the adrenal gland) can be removed this way.

The kidney is approached through three little incisions that are made into the abdomen to allow small surgical instruments to be brought to the kidney. The kidney and its surrounding fat are completely freed up inside the abdomen.

The entire kidney and surrounding fat tissue are removed through a small cut in the midline in the skin. No muscle is cut. As a result, there is less pain, a shorter hospital stay and faster recovery. This procedure usually requires an overnight hospital stay.

If you have a bladder cell type of tumor, which requires the removal of the kidney, ureter and a cuff of the bladder (where the ureter runs into the bladder), laparoscopy is usually a treatment option for you. The approach is the same as for a tumor of the kidney. Two small openings in the abdomen allow entry into the bladder for removal of the lowermost portion of the ureter. This approach usually requires a one- to two-night stay in the hospital.

Have Questions or Need Help?

To make an appointment or refer a patient, call the Department of Urology team. You can also have us call you back at your convenience.

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