Purpose: To test the viability of a new device to obtain hemostasis during laparoscopic partial nephrectomy (LPN) without vascular clamping.
Materials and methods: We performed a comparative experimental study between a new radiofrequency (RF)-assisted device consisting of a handheld instrument that simultaneously conducts coagulation and cutting tasks without hilar clamping vs a standard technique with hilar clamping. A porcine model was used (10 animals per group) with survival of 17 days.
Results: The estimated blood loss with the new device was significantly lower than with the standard technique (15.5±23.7 vs 79.4±76.3 mL). Although transection time was longer with the new device (10.7±13.7 vs 2.1±1.2 min), the total operative time was significantly shorter (35.3±13.7 vs 60.2±10.5 min). Evidence of localized urinary extravasation (urinoma) was identical in both groups (five cases). The group subjected to the new device, however, showed a significantly higher number of cases of leakage after conducting the methylene-blue test: eight (80%) cases vs only one (11%) with the standard technique. Necrosis depth was significantly greater with the new device (6.6±0.9 vs <1 mm).
Conclusions: The experimental results suggest that the proposed RF-assisted device provides adequate hemostatic control during transection of the renal parenchyma without additional instruments or surgical maneuvers and could therefore be a valuable adjunct for LPN without vascular clamping. The device was unsuccessful in effectively sealing the collecting system.