Laparoscopic Pyeloplasty

What is a laparoscopic pyeloplasty?

This is an operation to remove the blockage between the outlet of the kidney (renal pelvis) and the kidney tube (ureter). This condition is called pelvi-ureteric junction (PUJ) obstruction. This blockage is mostly due to blockage that occurs from birth, due to abnormal development of the kidney. Rarely it can be due to previous scarring that narrows the tube, caused by stones, trauma or previous surgery.

Key-hole surgery is performed through 3 – 4 incisions through the side of the abdomen to remove the blockage. A small tube (stent) is left in the ureter for 4-6 weeks to allow the tube to heal. This is then removed under local anaesthetic by passing a small telescope (cystoscope) into the bladder.

Conversion to a conventional open operation can occur if the procedure can not be performed through key-hole surgery. This occurs in approximately 5% of cases.

Why do I need this?

The operation is needed if the blockage causes kidney pain, kidney infections or the kidney function becomes damaged. It can also be associated with kidney stones and high blood pressure.

How long does it take?

2 – 3 hours under a general anaesthetic

What are the risks?

  • Infection – uncommon
  • Bleeding – uncommon
  • Wound pain/hernias – uncommon

What can I expect after surgery?

  • Expect some discomfort but this should be easily controlled with pain killers
  • Most people will be eating, drinking and out of bed the next day
  • Hospital stay is 2 – 4 days
  • Recovery at home and avoid strenuous physical activity for at least 3 weeks
  • While the stent remains inside you, there may be the urge to pass urine more frequently, and it is not uncommon to have some visible blood in the urine from time to time. This should not cause concern, and it is advisable to drink more than usual when blood is visible
  • Overall success rates to relieve the blockage are approximately 95%