What are the goals of partial nephrectomy nephron-sparing surgery (NSS) in the treatment of solid renal masses?

Updated: Mar 31, 2019
  • Author: Reza Ghavamian, MD; Chief Editor: Bradley Fields Schwartz, DO, FACS  more...
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Finally, the natural history and malignant potential of small RCC is not well understood. Although observation could be a viable option in elderly patients with high comorbidities, NSS allows for curative surgery and elimination of uncertainty in the average patient with acceptable expected longevity. The goals of conservative resection of RCC are complete local surgical removal of the malignancy and preservation of adequate renal function. This is a delicate balance, which makes renal-preserving surgery, at times, both challenging and controversial.

In addition to RCC, partial nephrectomy is an important alternative to radical nephrectomy for certain benign conditions that affect the kidney. It allows for optimal surgical treatment and, at the same time, obviates overtreatment and nephron loss when possible and necessary.

For patient education resources, see the Cancer Center and Renal Cell Cancer.

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