The Pros and cons of balloon dilation in totally ultrasound-guided percutaneous Nephrolithotomy

BMC Urol. 2020 Jul 1;20(1):82. doi: 10.1186/s12894-020-00654-x.


Background: To evaluate the feasibility and safety of balloon dilation (BD) in totally ultrasound-guided percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL).

Methods: The data of 95 patients underwent BD were collected in this retrospective study between August 2016 and December 2018. During the same period, telescopic metal dilation was used in 1161 patients. Ninety five patients were selected as the control group and matched at a 1:1 ratio to index balloon dilation (BD) cases in regards to Guy's stone score, age, sex, BMI, degree of hydronephrosis and stone area. Peri-operative data were compared between the two groups.

Results: Total operative time was significantly shorter in the BD group (62.2 ± 22.4 min vs. 70.2 ± 25.8 min, p = 0.024). Tract establishment time was significantly shorter in the BD group (3.4 ± 1.8 min vs. 4.3 ± 2.3 min, p < 0.001). The success rate of tract dilation by first attempt was higher in the TMD group compared with that of BD group; however the difference was not statistically significant. There was no significant difference between groups with regards to complication and stone-free rates. The cost of PCNL in the BD group was significantly higher than that of the TMD group (US $4831.4 ± 1114.8 vs. US $4328.4 ± 975.7, p = 0.012). Subsequent analysis revealed that mild or no hydronephrosis were risk factor for failure of balloon dilation under ultrasound.

Conclusions: BD has acceptable complication and stone free rates compared with those in TMD; however, BD under ultrasound is not suggested for stone cases without hydronephrosis.

Keywords: Percutaneous nephrolithotomy; Renal stone; Ultrasound; Urolithiasis.

MeSH terms

  • Dilatation / instrumentation
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Humans
  • Kidney Calculi / surgery*
  • Nephrolithotomy, Percutaneous / adverse effects
  • Nephrolithotomy, Percutaneous / methods*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgery, Computer-Assisted*
  • Ultrasonography, Interventional*