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Kidney cancer surgery

Kidney cancer patient is prepared for surgery.

Surgery is the main treatment for most kidney cancers. Potential surgical options include robotic-assisted, laparoscopic surgeries and an open surgical operation. The type of surgery can depend on a few factors, such as your overall health and the type and stage of your cancer.

  • Radical nephrectomy

    In this operation, the surgeon removes your whole kidney and the fatty tissue around the kidney and occasionally the attached adrenal gland and nearby lymph nodes. This procedure can be performed both laparoscopically and through an open incision. The type of surgery performed is influenced by both unique patient factors and tumor characteristics.  With laparoscopic surgery, the procedure is performed through several small incisions. With an open operation, the surgeon can make the incision in several places, the most common being the abdomen, under the ribs on the same side of the cancer.

  • Partial nephrectomy (nephron-sparing surgery)

    In this procedure, the surgeon removes only the part of the kidney that contains cancer, leaving the rest of the kidney behind.  Partial nephrectomy can help preserve kidney function and can often be performed utilizing robotic assisted or laparoscopic surgery.  In some cases, an open surgery may be preferred, and the surgeon can make the incision in several places, depending on factors like the location of the tumor and characteristics of each individual patient.