Does experience in creating a robot-assisted partial nephrectomy (RAPN) programme in an academic centre impact outcomes or complication rate?

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



BJU International








Clavien; complications; kidney; partial nephrectomy; renal mass; robotics


Objective To evaluate the impact of increased experience in robot-assisted partial nephrectomy (RAPN) on perioperative and oncological outcomes To detail the complications encountered in establishing a RAPN programme at a tertiary referral centre and the factors associated with these complications Patients and Methods The initial consecutive 233 patients undergoing RAPN between March 2008 and May 2012 at our institution were identified. Patients were divided into quartiles to evaluate outcomes, and uni- and multivariate predictors of complications were calculated Results In progressive quartiles, patients tended to have more complex renal tumours as evaluated by R.E.N.A.L. nephrometry (P < 0.01) or preoperative aspects and dimensions used for an anatomical classification (PADUA) scores (P = 0.003), and percentage endophytic (P = 0.01). Developing technique increased the patients undergoing unclamped PN (P < 0.01). The mean time in the operating room (from skin incision to closure) decreased significantly from 225 to 183 min (P < 0.01) and warm ischaemia time decreased from 28 to 15 min, when clamping (P < 0.01). Clavien graded complication rate (P = 0.26) and positive margin rate (P = 0.32) was unchanged by quartile. Conclusion We show that increasing experience allows more complex tumours to be removed with similar outcomes in patients undergoing RAPN. The complication rates and perioperative outcomes were similar in four successive quartiles of an initial experience of RAPN. © 2013 BJU International.

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