Preoperative patient counseling for diagnostic renal biopsy and complications with renal radiofrequency ablation

Scott M. Castle, Michael A. Gorin, Vladislav Gorbatiy, Raymond J. Leveillee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Purpose: To identify preoperative factors associated with surgical complications and successful diagnostic renal biopsy in both laparoscopic and percutaneous radiofrequency ablation (RFA) of renal masses in order to help aid in preoperative patient counseling for renal RFA. Methods: We reviewed our Institutional Review Board approved database from November 2001 to January 2011, containing 335 tumors treated with either laparoscopic (LRFA) or percutaneous RFA (CTRFA). Preoperative patient demographics, tumor characteristics, and intraoperative surgical data were collected along with biopsy results and clinicopathologic outcomes. Results: RFA was performed on 335 renal tumors (124 LRFA, 211 CTRFA). Non-diagnostic biopsy occurred in 18 (5.5%) tumors. Of the 317 procedures performed, 121 complications occurred in 103 (30.7%) procedures. Multivariate analysis only showed CTRFA (vs LRFA) to increase the likelihood of non-diagnostic biopsy (OR 5.1, 95% CI 1.2-22, p = 0.032). Increased tumor size (p = 0.007) and synchronous ablations (p = 0.019) increased the risk for major complications, while decreased surgeon experience (p = 0.003) and tumors close to the collecting system (p = 0.005) increased the risk of any complication. Conclusions: Preoperative recommendations can be made to patients in the future. We suggest counseling patients that when undergoing RFA, percutaneous approach increases the risk of non-diagnostic biopsy, increased tumor size increases the risk of major complications, having more than 1 tumor ablated increases the risk of a major complication, and tumors close to the collecting system may increase the risk of complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1105-1110
Number of pages6
JournalWorld journal of urology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Complications
  • Counseling
  • Radiofrequency ablation
  • Renal neoplasm

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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