Clinical research of renal vein control using Hem-o-lok clips in laparoscopic nephrectomy

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Control of the renal vein represents a crucial step in laparoscopic nephrectomy. Although endovascular gastrointestinal anastomosis (GIA) staplers have generally been used for renal vein control because of the large diameter of the vessel, Hem-o-lok clips have recently been used for renal artery control. GIA staplers are expensive and can malfunction on rare occasions, resulting in severe complications. We evaluated renal vein control using Hem-o-lok clips (adaptive vascular width 7–16 mm) in laparoscopic nephrectomy. Since April 2004, we have ligated renal arteries using Hem-o-lok clips. From June 2004, this method was applied for renal vein control in 40 laparoscopic nephrectomies. After renal pedicle dissection, renal pedicle ligation was accomplished using extra large (XL) Hem-o-lok clips on both the renal arteries and veins by placing two clips on the patient side and one clip on the specimen side. Ligation times for obtaining renal vein control were compared between XL Hem-o-lok clips and GIA staplers in 40 cases before June 2004. Vascular control using XL Hem-o-lok clips was successful in all 40 cases, without any slipping of clips or uncontrolled bleeding. After renal pedicle dissection, ligation time for achieving renal vein control was 167.0 ± 48 s (range: 122–295 s) using XL Hem-o-lok clips (mean, three clips) and 68 ± 24.0 s (range: 54–150 s) using a GIA stapler. XL Hem-o-lok clips allow safe and reliable control of renal veins in laparoscopic nephrectomy. Ligation time is only 100 s longer than using a GIA stapler. In addition, costs are reduced by more than 90% compared to GIA stapling.

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