"Trifecta" in partial nephrectomy

Andrew J. Hung, Jie Cai, Matthew N. Simmons, Inderbir S. Gill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

305 Scopus citations


Purpose: We introduce the concept of trifecta outcomes during robotic/laparoscopic partial nephrectomy, in which the 3 key outcomes of negative cancer margin, minimal renal functional decrease and no urological complications are simultaneously realized. We report serial trifecta outcomes in patients treated with robotic/laparoscopic partial nephrectomy for tumor in a 12-year period. Materials and Methods: A total of 534 patients had complete data available and were retrospectively divided into 4 chronologic eras, including the discovery era - 139 from September 1999 to December 2003, conventional hilar clamping era - 213 from January 2004 to December 2006, early unclamping era - 104 from January 2007 to November 2008 and anatomical zero ischemia era - 78 from March 2010 to October 2011. Renal functional decrease was defined as a greater than 10% reduction in the actual vs volume predicted postoperative estimated glomerular filtration rate. Results: Across the 4 eras tumors trended toward larger size (2.9, 2.8, 3.1 and 3.3 cm, p = 0.08) and yet the estimated percent of kidney preserved was similar (89%, 90%, 90% and 88%, respectively, p = 0.3). Recent eras had increasingly complex tumors that were more often 4 cm or greater (p = 0.03), centrally located (p <0.009) or hilar (p <0.0001). Nevertheless, with significant technical refinement warm ischemia time decreased serially (36, 32, 15 and 0 minutes, respectively, p <0.0001). Renal functional outcomes were superior in recent eras with fewer patients experiencing a decrease (p <0.0001). Uniquely, actual estimated glomerular filtration rate outcomes exceeded volume predicted estimated glomerular filtration rate outcomes only in the zero ischemia cohort in regard to other eras (-9.5%, -11%, -0.9% and 4.2%, respectively, p <0.001). Positive cancer margins were uniformly low at less than 1%. Urological complications trended lower in recent eras (p = 0.01). Trifecta outcomes occurred more commonly in recent eras (45%, 44%, 62% and 68%, respectively, p = 0.0002). Conclusions: Trifecta should be a routine goal during partial nephrectomy. Despite increasing tumor complexity, trifecta outcomes of robotic/laparoscopic partial nephrectomy improved significantly in the last decade.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-42
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • carcinoma renal cell
  • kidney
  • laparoscopy
  • nephrectomy
  • robotics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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