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European UrologyVolume 61, issue 6, pages e53-e66, June 2012
Laparoscopic Versus Open Nephroureterectomy for the Treatment of Upper Urinary Tract Urothelial Carcinoma: A Systematic Review and Cumulative Analysis of Comparative Studies
Accepted 7 February 2012, Published online 6 March 2012, pages 1142 - 1153
Laparoscopic nephroureterectomy (LNU) has increasingly been used as a minimally invasive alternative to open nephroureterectomy (ONU), but studies comparing the efficacy and safety of the two surgical procedures are still limited.
Evaluate the oncologic and perioperative outcomes of LNU versus ONU in the treatment of upper urinary tract urothelial carcinoma.
A systematic review and cumulative analysis of comparative studies reporting both oncologic and perioperative outcomes of LNU and ONU was performed through a comprehensive search of the Medline, Embase, and the Cochrane Library electronic databases. All analyses were performed using the Review Manager (RevMan) v.5 (Nordic Cochrane Centre, Copenhagen, Denmark) and Meta-analysis In eXcel (MIX) 2.0 Pro (BiostatXL) software packages.
Twenty-one eligible studies (1235 cases and 3093 controls) were identified. A significantly higher proportion of pTa/Tis was observed in LNU compared to ONU (27.52% vs 22.59%; p = 0.047), but there were no significant differences in other stages and pathologic grades (all p > 0.05). For patients who underwent LNU, the 5-yr cancer-specific survival (CSS) rate was significantly higher, at 9% (p = 0.03), compared to those who underwent ONU, while the overall recurrence rate and bladder recurrence rate were notably lower, at 15% (p = 0.01) and 17% (p = 0.02), respectively. However, there were no statistically significant differences in 2-yr CSS, 5-yr recurrence-free survival (RFS), 5-yr overall survival (OS), 2-yr OS, and metastasis rates between LNU and ONU (all p > 0.05). Moreover, there were no significant differences between LNU and ONU in terms of intraoperative complications, postoperative complications, and perioperative mortality (all p > 0.05). The results of our study were mainly limited by the retrospective design of most of the individual studies included as well as selection biases based on different management of regional lymph nodes and pathologic characteristics.
Our data suggest that LNU offers reliable perioperative safety and comparable oncologic efficacy when compared to ONU. Given that some limitations cannot be overcome, well-designed prospective trials are needed to confirm our findings.
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