Patients with obstructive pyonephrotic nonfunctioning kidney (OPNK) often require simple nephrectomy for long-term severe clinical symptoms. We aimed to analyze the outcomes of retroperitoneal laparoscopy versus open surgery for OPNK.
The study included clinical data of 69 patients with non-tuberculous OPNK from January 2015 to June 2019 in a single center. The patients were divided into laparoscopic group (LS, N=33) and open surgery group (OS, N=36). Those whose pathological findings were xanthogranulomatous inflammation or tuberculous granuloma were excluded. Statistical analysis compared the two groups in terms of basic demographic characteristics, preoperative laboratory examination results, and intraoperative and postoperative observation indicators.
The results showed that non-tuberculous OPNK were more common in women (female/male =4:1). Compared with the LS group, patients in the OS group had higher white blood cells (WBC; P=0.010) and neutrophils (P=0.005) counts before surgery. The main clinical symptoms were low back pain, pyuria, and fever; among them, low back pain combined with pyuria was in the majority. More intraoperative hypotension events were observed in the OS group (P=0.007). Notably, subgroup analysis showed larger stone size happened in the OS group (OR 3.538, 95% CI, 1.337, 9.208). No statistical difference was found in the duration of surgery between the two groups while the length of postoperative hospitalization and retroperitoneal drainage, and postoperative blood transfusion rate increased significantly in the OS group. Postoperative use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs was more common in the LS group, while opioid analgesics were in the OS group (P=0.0006). There was no statistical difference in other complications.
In conclusion, considering the advantages of LS in terms of postoperative blood transfusion, surgical drainage and length of hospital stay, we recommend it for non-tubercular OPNK when the stone load of pyonephrosis side was less than 280 mm and the preoperative WBC and neutrophil count were within the normal range.

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