Importance of cosmesis to patients undergoing renal surgery: A comparison of laparoendoscopic single-site (LESS), laparoscopic and open surgery

Ephrem O. Olweny, Saad A. Mir, Sara L. Best, Samuel K. Park, Chester Donnally, Jeffrey A Cadeddu, Chad R. Tracy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: • To evaluate patient attitudes towards cosmesis relative to other considerations, before and after undergoing laparoendoscopic single-site surgery (LESS) vs laparoscopic/robot-assisted vs open kidney surgery. METHODS: • Participants were provided with a survey querying demographic information, surgical history and importance of scarring relative to other surgical outcomes and considerations. • The relative importance of each outcome was recorded on a nine-level ranking scale, ranging from 1 (most important) to 9 (least important). • The median scores for each outcome were compared before and after surgery using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test, and by surgical approach using the Kruskal-Wallis test. • The importance of scarring was further analysed according to age (≤ 50 vs > 50 years), surgical indication (oncological vs non-oncological), gender, and proportion of patients who had undergone previous abdominal surgery. RESULTS: • A total of 90 patients completed surveys before surgery, of whom 65 (72.2%) also completed surveys after surgery. • 'Surgeon reputation' and 'no complications' were the most important considerations before surgery (median scores 2 and 3, respectively) and after surgery (median scores of 2 for both). • 'Size/number of scars' was the least important consideration before surgery (median score 8) and the second least important consideration after surgery (median score 7). • The median score for 'size/number of scars' was significantly higher for the LESS cohort before surgery (laparoscopic/ robot-assisted vs LESS vs open surgery: 8.5 vs 6 vs 9; P = 0.003), but was nonsignificant after surgery (laparoscopic/robotic vs LESS vs open surgery: 7 vs 6.5 vs 7.5; P = 0.83). • The median score for 'size/number of scars' before surgery was significantly higher for younger patients (P = 0.05) and those with non-oncological surgical indications (P < 0.001), but there was no significant difference in this outcome for these sub-groups after surgery. CONCLUSIONS: • For most patients contemplating urological surgery, cosmesis is of less concern than surgeon reputation and avoidance of surgical complications. • Cosmesis may be a more important preoperative consideration for younger patients and those with benign conditions, which warrants further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)268-272
Number of pages5
JournalBJU international
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 2012


  • Cosmetic techniques
  • Laparoscopy
  • Patient preference

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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