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Laparoscopic & Robotic-Assisted Kidney Surgery

For patients with kidney tumors, ureteropelvic junction obstruction, or non-functional kidneys, laparoscopic or robotic-assisted laparoscopic procedures are often performed.

During these procedures, the patient is placed under general anesthesia and then placed on their side on the operating room table. Once in position and prepped, access to the abdomen is created either with a special needle or under direct vision with a small incision and once in the abdomen, the abdominal cavity is filled with carbon dioxide gas (pneumoperitoneum) to create working space for the surgical instruments and to help prevent bleeding.



Once the abdomen is filled with gas, a scope is placed into the abdomen and additional access ports, or trocars, are placed to allow for placement of the surgical instruments. If the robot is going to be utilized, it is now brought in and attached to the trocars. Some cases utilize a hand-assisted technique where a small jelly disk is placed on the abdominal wall to allow placement of one of the surgeon’s hands in to the abdomen.


Once the planned surgical procedure is completed, the trocars are removed and incisions are closed. Most laparoscopic or robotic-assisted kidney surgery include a one or two night hospital stay.

The preparation for laparoscopic/robotic kidney surgery includes a clear liquid diet the day prior to surgery and a gentle bowel prep to remove stool from the colon, which overlies the kidney.

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