Objectives. To assess the safety and efficacy of laparoscopic ablation of symptomatic renal cysts as minimally invasive therapeutic techniques have largely supplanted open surgical intervention for the treatment of symptomatic renal cysts. Methods. The records of 32 consecutive adult patients who underwent laparoscopic ablation of renal cysts (11 peripelvic, 21 parenchymal) were retrospectively reviewed. All patients were symptomatic at presentation; 26 had a single cyst, 5 had two cysts, and 1 had four cysts. Results. Twenty patients underwent a transperitoneal laparoscopic approach, and 12 patients underwent a retroperitoneal laparoscopic approach. An average of 3.2 ports were used for each procedure, and no open conversions or transfusions were necessary. When comparing patients with parenchymal and peripelvic cysts, statistically significant differences were noted in the mean operative time (164 versus 233 minutes, respectively; P = 0.003) and mean operative blood loss (98 versus 182 mL, respectively; P = 0.04). Four patients (13%) had complications (one major and three minor), including a persistent ureteral stricture. One patient with negative preoperative aspiration cytology and negative intraoperative frozen section analysis was later found to have malignancy within the cyst wall, necessitating radical nephrectomy and trocar site excision. One patient (3%) developed a recurrence. Conclusions. Laparoscopic ablation of symptomatic renal cysts is a safe and efficacious procedure. We report an overall complication rate of 13% and a recurrence rate of 3% with a mean follow-up of 18.1 months (median 10.0).
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