Purpose: We report our experience with retroperitoneal laparoscopic nephrectomy and nephroureterectomy in children, and describe our surgical technique. Materials and Methods: Five and 15 children 9 months to 17 years old underwent nephrectomy with cystoscopy plus intravesical ureteral stump fulguration for ureteral ablation and nephrectomy only, respectively. Surgical indications were unilateral multicystic dysplastic kidney in 8 cases (parental preference for surgery), a refluxing, chronic pyelonephritic kidney in 5, renal Vascular hypertension in 2, and hydronephrosis and chronic pyelonephritis in 5, including 3 in whom a nephrostomy tube was placed percutaneously before laparoscopic nephrectomy. Access was obtained by a 10 mm. incision made posterior to the anterosuperior iliac spine with dissection into the retroperitoneal space and trochar placement. Two and sometimes 3 additional 5 mm. ports were placed retroperitoneally. Results: Average operative time was 1 hour 42 minutes. The most recent cases were performed in less than 1 hour and in 3 nephrectomy only required 30 minutes. All but 1 procedure were completed laparoscopically. One case was converted to open surgery secondary to obscured visibility due to bleeding. Blood loss in all cases was less than 30 cc (average 5 to 10). A total of 13 children were discharged home immediately postoperatively. Five children underwent concomitant procedures, including contralateral ureteroneocystotomy in 4, circumcision in i and cystoscopic fulguration of the ureteral stump in 5. Those who underwent ureteral reimplantation were hospitalized for 48 hours. One patient remained hospitalized for 3 days due to fever of unknown origin and 2 were admitted to the hospital for 23-hour observation. All children returned to full activity within i week of surgery. Analgesia consisted of i dose of ketorolac, bupivacaine injections at the incisional sites at the completion of the procedure, and acetaminophen postoperatively. Conclusions: As confirmed by parent questionnaire, patient satisfaction was excellent.
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