Laparoscopic Kidney Surgery

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In the past, kidney surgery required making large incisions, which meant a lengthy hospitalization and recovery period. With developments in surgical techniques and advances in technology, laparoscopic kidney surgery can now be performed.

Laparoscopic kidney surgery is sometimes referred to as minimally invasive, or keyhole kidney surgery.

How is laparoscopic kidney surgery performed?

During laparoscopic kidney surgery, your surgeon makes small incisions in the lower abdomen, through which the laparoscope (an instrument with a light and camera) and other required surgical tools are placed.

Laparoscopic kidney surgery allows the surgeon to perform the procedure whilst navigating the region by inspecting the images produced by the camera on a digital monitor. The surgeon is able to visualize tissue, biopsy any suspicious regions, remove part of or even the entire kidney using small instruments.

What are the advantages of laparoscopic kidney surgery?

The main advantage of laparoscopic kidney surgery is that the procedure can be performed through just a few small incisions, as opposed to traditional, open surgery. Smaller incisions mean a shorter hospitalization and recovery time for the patient, and a reduction in pain and scarring.

For the surgeon, laparoscopic kidney surgery allows a more detailed view of the organs and tissues through the magnification of the camera.

Not all patients are suitable candidates for laparoscopic kidney surgery. Your urologist will perform a thorough assessment of your condition and will be able to advise you on the best treatment for you.

What types of laparoscopic kidney surgery can be performed?

There are several procedures that can be performed as laparoscopic kidney surgery including:

Partial Nephrectomy

A partial nephrectomy is a laparoscopic kidney surgery procedure that is performed to remove a part of the kidney. It is sometimes referred to as a ‘kidney sparing’ procedure, since it aims to preserve the healthy part of the kidney tissue and therefore preserve the kidney’s function.

This type of laparoscopic kidney surgery may be an option for patients with:

  • A benign or cancerous kidney tumour
  • A kidney tumour smaller than 4cm diameter, or multiple small tumours
  • Tumours 5-7cm may also be suitable for this surgical approach, depending on their position on the kidney
  • Severely damaged or diseased kidney tissue that requires removal, where the entire kidney is not affected.

Radical Nephrectomy

Radical (or total) nephrectomy is a laparoscopic kidney surgery procedure that is performed to remove the entire kidney. Occasionally, some of the surrounding structures may also need to be removed, which can include the adjacent lymph nodes, adrenal gland, or part of the ureter.

This type of laparoscopic kidney surgery may be performed in order to remove kidney cancer, to remove a benign (non-cancerous) tumour of the kidney, or to remove a very diseased, damaged or non-functioning kidney.


Pyeloplasty is a laparoscopic kidney surgery that is performed to correct a blockage between the kidney and the ureter (the pelvic-ureteric junction), known as a PUJ obstruction.

Melbourne Urology Centre’s expertise in laparoscopic kidney surgery Melbourne

Like all procedures, the success of the laparoscopic kidney surgery is related to the surgeon’s experience in performing the technique. At Melbourne Urology Centre, specialist urologists Dr Tony de Sousa and Dr Shekib Shahbaz are fully trained and highly experienced in performing laparoscopic kidney surgery.

best urologists melbourne shekib and tony

Under the care of our friendly and knowledgeable team, you can rest assured that you will receive the highest quality, specialist urological care, with a tailored, patient-focused approach.

If you wish to learn more about laparoscopic kidney surgery, you may read under the ‘Procedures’ and ‘Conditions’ tabs, or should you wish to speak to a member of our administrative team about booking an appointment to discuss laparoscopic kidney surgery Melbourne, please phone us on 1300 702 811.

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