Partial Nephrectomy is Associated with Higher Risk of Relapse Compared with Radical Nephrectomy for Clinical Stage T1 Renal Cell Carcinoma Pathologically Up Staged to T3a

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Purpose:We studied recurrence-free survival after partial vs radical nephrectomy for clinical stage T1 renal cell carcinoma in all patients and in those up staged to pathological stage T3a.Materials and Methods:We retrospectively reviewed the records of 1,250 patients who underwent partial or radical nephrectomy for clinically localized T1 renal cell carcinoma between 2006 and 2014. Recurrence-free survival was estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method and evaluated as a function of nephrectomy type with the log rank test and Cox models, adjusting for clinical, radiological and pathological characteristics.Results:A total of 86 recurrences (7%) were observed during a median followup of 37 months. No difference in recurrence-free survival between partial and radical nephrectomy was found among all clinical stage T1 renal cell carcinomas. T3a up staging was noted in 140 patients (11%) and recurrent disease was observed in 44 (31.4%) during a median followup of 38 months. Among up staged T3a cases partial nephrectomy was associated with shorter recurrence-free survival compared to radical nephrectomy on univariable analysis (recurrence HR 2.04, 95% CI 1.12–3.68, p = 0.019) and multivariable analysis (recurrence HR 5.39, 95% CI 1.94–14.9, p = 0.001).Conclusions:In a subgroup of patients clinically staged T1 renal cell carcinoma will be pathologically up staged to T3a. Among these patients those who undergo partial nephrectomy appear to have inferior recurrence-free survival relative to those who undergo radical nephrectomy.

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