Living-donor nephrectomy (LDN) is challenging, as surgery is performed on healthy individuals. Minimally invasive techniques for LDN have become standard in most centers. Nevertheless, numerous techniques have been described with no consensus on which is the superior approach. Both hand-assisted retroperitoneoscopic (HARS) and hand-assisted laparoscopic (HALS) LDNs are performed at Zurich University Hospital. The aim of this study was to compare these two surgical techniques in terms of donor outcome and graft function.
Retrospective single-center analysis of 60 consecutive LDNs (HARS n = 30; HALS n = 30) from June 2010 to May 2012, including a one-year follow-up of the recipients.
There was no mortality in either group and little difference in the overall complication rates. Median warm ischemia time (WIT) was significantly shorter in the HARS group. The use of laxatives and the incidence of postoperative vomiting were significantly greater in the HALS group. There was no difference between right- and left-sided nephrectomies in terms of donor outcome and graft function.
Both techniques appear safe for both donors and donated organs. The HARS technique is associated with a shorter WIT and a reduced incidence of postoperative paralytic ileus. Therefore, we consider HARS LDN a valuable alternative to HALS LDN.