Patient-reported outcome measures of abdominal wall morbidity after flank incision for open partial nephrectomy

BJU Int. 2021 Apr 7. doi: 10.1111/bju.15420. Online ahead of print.


Objective: To compare patient-reported outcome measures in patients with and without abdominal wall complications after open partial nephrectomy (OPN) via flank incision.

Patients and methods: Patient-reported outcome measures were collected in 2017 from all patients operated on with OPN via flank incision between 2004 and 2016 in Västerbotten County, Sweden. Patients were mailed the ventral hernia pain questionnaire (VHPQ) and an abdominal wall asymmetry (AWA) questionnaire to evaluate postoperative AWA, attributed to bulge or incisional hernia. Demographic and follow-up data were retrieved from patient records.

Results: A total of 198 patients were eligible for the study, and 146 questionnaires were returned (74%). Forty-five patients (31%) reported postoperative AWA and 27 (18%) reported ongoing pain. Three patients who reported AWA had a known incisional hernia. Pain and abdominal wall stiffness were more common in patients with AWA than in those without (P < 0.01 and P < 0.01, respectively). Of the 45 patients with AWA, 25 (56%) reported this as being negative cosmetically and 16 (36%) as negative regarding activities. Patients that reported AWA were younger and had a higher body mass index at surgery (P = 0.03 and 0.04, respectively).

Conclusion: Abdominal wall asymmetry is a common sequel of flank incision for OPN and is associated with a higher incidence of chronic pain and abdominal stiffness compared to absence of postoperative AWA. Some patients reported that the effect on daily activities and the cosmetic effect caused by AWA had a negative impact on their quality of life.

Keywords: #KidneyCancer; #kcsm; #uroonc; bulge; flank incision; incisional hernia; open partial nephrectomy; renal cell carcinoma; ventral hernia pain questionnaire.