PARIS—Nearly one quarter of patients undergoing partial nephrectomy (PN) experience complications, but most are minor, a researcher reported at the 27th Annual Congress of the European Association of Urology.

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The researcher, Hervé Baumert, MD, PhD, of Paris Saint-Joseph Hospital Trust in Paris, presented findings from a prospective study of 576 PN patients. He told congress attendees that 23.4% of subjects experienced complications. The rate of surgical complications was 13.2% and the rate of non-surgical complications was 10.2%. He noted that complication rates did not differ significantly by surgical approach. Open, laparoscopic, and robotic PN had complication rates of 13%, 12.6%, and 15.8%, respectively.

Overall, 2.3% of patients experienced urinary fistulas: 3.1% of patients who underwent open PN, 1.7% who underwent laparoscopic PN, and 0% of those who underwent robotic PN. Arteriovenous fistulas occurred in 1% of subjects: 0.8%, 0.8%, and 2.2% of patients who underwent open, laparoscopic, and robotic PN, respectively. Perioperative transfusion rates were 4.5%, 3.4%, and 5.6%, respectively. The differences in the rates of urinary fistulas and arteriovenous fistulas did not differ significantly among the three groups.

The study population experienced two deaths: one from a massive pulmonary embolism and the other from a post-hemorrhagic cardiovascular failure.