Nephrectomy (kidney removal)

laparoscopic nephrectomy anesthesia

During Nephrectomy (kidney removal)

What you can expect

A nephrectomy procedure is performed during general anesthesia. You'll receive a medication (anesthetic) before surgery so that you won't be awake or feel pain during surgery. You'll also have a urinary catheter — a small tube that drains urine from your bladder — placed before surgery. During the procedure, the urologic surgeon and anesthesia team work together to minimize pain after surgery.

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During the procedure

The nephrectomy procedure varies, depending on how the surgery is performed and how much of the kidney is removed. Variations include:

. Laparoscopic surgery. In this minimally invasive procedure, the surgeon makes a few small incisions in your abdomen to insert wand like devices equipped with video cameras and small surgical tools. The surgeon must make a slightly larger opening if your entire kidney needs to be removed.

. Robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery. In a variation of laparoscopic surgery, the surgeon uses a robotic system to perform the procedure. Robotic tools require very small incisions, provide better 3-D images during the procedure, and can make fine or complex motions that are similar to what a surgeon's hand can do in open surgery.

. Open surgery. In an open nephrectomy, the urologic surgeon makes a cut (incision) along your side or on your abdomen. This open approach allows surgeons to perform some surgeries that still can't be performed safely with less invasive approaches.

. Radical nephrectomy. In a radical nephrectomy, the surgeon removes the whole kidney, the fatty tissues surrounding the kidney and a portion of the tube connecting the kidney to the bladder (ureter). The surgeon may remove the adrenal gland that sits atop the kidney if a tumor is close to or involves the adrenal gland. In some cases lymph nodes or other tissues are removed as well.

. Partial nephrectomy. In a partial nephrectomy — also called kidney-sparing (nephron-sparing) surgery — the surgeon removes a cancerous tumor or diseased tissue and leaves in as much healthy kidney tissue as possible.

Your urologic surgeon will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of robotic or other types of minimally invasive surgery versus open surgery, including issues such as scarring and the time it takes to return to normal activities.

10 common questions about laparoscopic nephrectomy anesthesia

1How long does a laparoscopic nephrectomy take?
How long does laparoscopic nephrectomy surgery take? Laparoscopic nephrectomy surgery takes approximately 2 to 2-1/2 hours, and the hospital stay is usually just overnight, even for large tumors.
2Can a nephrectomy be done laparoscopically?
Laparoscopic Nephrectomy provides patients with a safe and effective way to remove a diseased or cancerous kidney. Laparosopic nephrectomy is a minimally invasive technique, which provides patients with less discomfort and equivalent results when compared to the larger incision required with traditional open surgery.
3Is a nephrectomy major surgery?
A nephrectomy is a major surgery to remove all or part of your kidney. The kidneys are two small, bean-shaped organs in the abdomen. ... A nephrectomy is done when: your kidney is damaged
4Is a nephrectomy painful?
A nephrectomy is surgery to take out part or all of the kidney. ... Your belly will feel sore after the surgery. This usually lasts about 1 to 2 weeks. Your doctor will give you pain medicine for this.
5When can you drive after a nephrectomy?
Driving should be avoided for at least one to two weeks after surgery. Absolutely no heavy lifting (greater than 20 pounds) or exercising (jogging, swimming, treadmill, biking) for six weeks or until instructed by your doctor. Most patients return to full activity on an average of three weeks after surgery
6How long does pain last after nephrectomy?
Your belly will feel sore after the surgery. This usually lasts about 1 to 2 weeks. Your doctor will give you pain medicine for this
7What are the side effects of living with one kidney?
There may also be a chance of having high blood pressure later in life. However, the loss in kidney function is usually very mild, and life span is normal. Most people with one kidney live healthy, normal lives with few problems. In other words, one healthy kidney can work as well as two
8How long is partial nephrectomy recovery?
Most people recover quite rapidly from their surgery. Some begin working after only a few days or weeks. Nonetheless, because recovery can be variable, you should forewarn your employer that you will be absent from your job for six weeks after open kidney surgery, and for two to three weeks after laparoscopic surgery.
9What is the difference between simple and radical nephrectomy?
Partial nephrectomy: A surgical procedure to remove the cancer within the kidney and some of the tissue around it. ... Simple nephrectomy: A surgical procedure to remove the kidney only. Radical nephrectomy: A surgical procedure to remove the kidney, the adrenal gland, surrounding tissue and, usually, nearby lymph nodes.
10How long is the surgery for kidney removal?
The procedure can take 3 or more hours. Simple nephrectomy or open kidney removal: You will be lying on your side. Your surgeon will make an incision (cut) up to 12 inches or 30 centimeters (cm) long

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