Extending the Application of Tubeless Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy

Mario Sofer*, Avi Beri, Alan Friedman, Galit Aviram, Nicola J. Mabjeesh, Juza Chen, Jacob Ben-Chaim, Alexander Greenstein, Haim Matzkin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Tubeless percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) has been successfully performed in selected patients. We assessed its applicability for use without imposing preoperative restrictions. Methods: The study consisted of a prospective and consecutive series of 126 patients. Tubeless PCNL was performed when perforation, residual stones, and significant bleeding had been intraoperatively excluded by fluoroscopy, nephroscopy, and hemodynamic assessment. Staghorn stones, supracostal and/or multiple access, anatomic anomalies, previously operated kidneys, solitary kidneys, and operative time were not considered contraindications. The demographic, clinical, and intraoperative and postoperative data were statistically analyzed. Results: Using this protocol, we performed 66 (52%) tubeless and 60 (48%) regular PCNLs. The average patient age (54 years versus 52 years), stone burden (924 versus 1044 mm2), operative time (116 versus 130 minutes), complication rate (9% versus 13%), hemoglobin decrease (1.2 versus 1.1 mg/dL), and immediate stone-free rate (92% versus 90%) were similar for the tubeless and regular PCNL groups, respectively (P >0.05). The reasons for performing standard PCNL were an expected second-look procedure (n = 35, 58%), an impression of active bleeding (n = 16, 27%), significant extravasation (n = 5, 8%), and suspected hydrothorax (n = 4, 7%). The overall transfusion rate was 3%. The average analgesia requirement (pethidine HCL) was 0.4 and 1.2 mg/kg (P <0.01), the median hospital stay was 1 and 4 days (P <0.0001), and the median back-to-work time was 7 and 15 days (P <0.001) for the tubeless and regular PCNL groups, respectively. Conclusions: The results of our study have shown that tubeless PCNL can be safely and effectively performed based on intraoperative factors, without preoperative contraindications. Compared with the standard procedure, tubeless PCNL was associated with reduced postoperative pain, hospital stay, and recovery time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)412-416
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007


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