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What is laparoscopic cryoablation?

Laparoscopic cryoablation is minimally invasive surgical procedure that freezes and destroys small kidney tumors.

When is cryoablation used?

Laparoscopic cryoablation is used to treat small (up to 4 centimeters) renal tumors. In appropriately selected patients, it offers an alternative to open surgical or laparoscopic partial nephrectomy.

What does cryoablation involve?

Unlike a conventional partial nephrectomy, , laparoscopic kidney surgery requires only three to four button-hole incisions. Through these incisions, a surgeon uses an endoscope – a tiny camera – and specialized surgical instruments to conduct the operation. With the tip of a freezing probe, the diseased portion of the kidney is removed. Puncture cryoablation, which requires a percutaneous skin puncture to deliver the cryotherapy, is performed under magnified laparoscopic visualization and ultrasound monitoring.

How long does cryoablation take?

Cryoablation surgery takes approximately 2 to 21/2 hours, and the hospital stay is usually just one day. Full recovery from cryoablation usually takes about two to three weeks.

What are the advantages of cryoablation?

Traditional surgery for tumor removal requires a 10- to 12-inch incision, at a minimum. The minimally invasive technique of cryoablation requires three to four tiny incisions for the surgical instruments.

Cryoablation patients benefit from:

  • Reduced hospital stay (one day) and faster healing
  • Less postoperative pain and less need for pain medication
  • Shorter recovery time
  • Quicker return to normal activity (about a week) and work (about two weeks)
  • Smaller incisions and less scarring
  • Fewer complications

What about cryoablation follow up?

Patients who have undergone cryoablation are followed closely with sequential MRI scans at one, three and six months, as well as a CT-controlled needle biopsy at six months.

How long has Cleveland Clinic been performing cryoablation?

Cleveland Clinic has the most experience of any health care center in the world related to laparoscopic cryoablation. Our specialists have performed over 140 laparoscopic cryoablations over the last seven years.

Call us for an Appointment

Urology Appointments: 800.223.2273 ext. 4-5600
Nephrology Appointments: 800.223.2273 ext. 4-6771

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Do you have a question about our services? Ask the nurse in the Glickman Urological & Kidney Institute.

This information is provided by Cleveland Clinic and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.

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