Morbidity of open retroperitoneal lymph node dissection for testicular cancer: Contemporary perioperative data

Stephen B. Williams, David W. McDermott, Dock Winston, Eamonn Bahnson, Alexander M. Berry, Graeme S. Steele, Jerome P. Richie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Study Type - Therapy (prospective cohort) Level of Evidence 2b Objective To review differences between primary retroperitoneal lymph node dissection (P-RPLND) and RPLND after chemotherapy (PC-RPLND) in a contemporary series of patients with testicular cancer, to validate the proposed low morbidity. Patients and methods Patients who had undergone RPLND at our institution in 2001-2008 were identified and their clinical charts reviewed; in all, 190 were identified and perioperative data obtained. Results Of the 190 patients who had RPLND, 98 (52%) and 92 (48%) had P- and PC-RPLND, respectively. Histology of the orchidectomy specimen consisted of embryonal carcinoma in 146 (76%) patients, also including lymphovascular invasion in 83 (44%). The mean (range) operative duration was 206 (110-475) min and the mean blood loss was 294 (50-7000) mL. The median hospital stay was 4 days. Mean blood loss, operative duration and hospital stay were significantly less for the P-RPLND than for PC-RPLND groups (P < 0.05). There were 18 (9%) perioperative complications in all. There were no deaths in either group. Conclusions The short-term morbidity of open RPLND is acceptable, and open RPLND is safe and effective at select tertiary centres. When compared with historical data, the present contemporary series shows that the operative duration, blood loss and hospital stay have improved, with few complications. These contemporary data should be considered when comparing laparoscopic with open RPLND.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)918-921
Number of pages4
JournalBJU International
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Morbidity
  • Retroperitoneal lymph node dissection
  • Testicular cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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