Equal Oncologic Results for Laparoscopic and Open Resection of Adrenal Metastases

Academic Article


  • Background: While open adrenalectomy is often performed for malignant adrenal tumors, increasing numbers of surgeons have adopted the laparoscopic approach. The postoperative benefits of laparoscopic adrenalectomy are well established, but questions persist about long-term oncologic outcomes when used for malignant lesions. The current study was undertaken to compare laparoscopic with open adrenalectomy for isolated adrenal metastases. Methods: From March 1993 to April 2006, 20 adults underwent adrenalectomy for isolated metastases to the adrenal gland. Three patients were excluded because of a concomitant nephrectomy (2) and an unresectable tumor (1). Patient demographics, tumor characteristics, and oncologic outcomes of the remaining patients were reviewed and analyzed. Results: Of the 17 patients who received adrenalectomy for an isolated metastasis, there were 11 men and 6 women with a mean age of 58 ± 3 y. Nine patients underwent laparoscopic adrenalectomy, and 8 patients had open adrenalectomy. Laparoscopic adrenalectomy was associated with less blood loss (63 ± 8 mL versus 2207 ± 1067 mL, P = 0.05), a lower complication rate (0% versus 63%, P = 0.009), and a shorter length of stay (2.4 ± 0.6 d versus 5.4 ± 0.7 d, P = 0.02). With a follow-up of up to 97 mo, there were no port site metastases, no tumor recurrences, and no difference in survival between laparoscopic and open adrenalectomy (median 19 months versus 17 months, 5-year survival 34% versus 54%, P = 0.96). Conclusions: When not limited by tumor size or invasion of surrounding tissue, laparoscopic adrenalectomy is a safe alternative to open adrenalectomy with equivalent oncologic outcomes and clear postoperative benefit for patients with isolated metastases to the adrenal gland. © 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Adler JT; Mack E; Chen H
  • Start Page

  • 159
  • End Page

  • 164
  • Volume

  • 140
  • Issue

  • 2