Background There are no data concerning the national experience with laparoscopic live donor nephrectomy (LLDN) in Italy. A survey was therefore conducted in May 2003 to establish current practice patterns and to describe the outcome of this procedure. Methods A self-administered questionnaire was mailed to the 37 Italian kidney transplant centers. Items covered each center's attitude toward LLDN, number of cases performed, and the outcome of donors and recipients. Results The return rate was 100%. The surveyed centers performed 4818 kidney transplants between January 2000 and May 2003, including 401 (8.3%) from living donors of whom 113 (28.2%) used grafts retrieved by laparoscopy. Despite an absolute increase in the number of living donors, the occurrence of a similar trend in cadaveric donation did not significantly change the overall living donor rate. Sixty-eight percent of LLDNs were done at only two centers. There was no mortality or graft loss and only a minor morbidity related to LLDN. Italian transplant surgeons showed a positive attitude toward LLDN; only a few of those not performing it had no plans to begin an LLDN program. Conclusions Three years after the first national case, LLDN had not yet change the living donor rate, although an increasing number of donor nephrectomies were now performed by laparoscopy. Overall the results with the new technique are encouraging, although the pattern of diffusion of LLDN between different areas is heterogeneous and will demand continous efforts on training programs in laparoscopic techniques for transplant surgeons.
|Number of pages||4|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2004|
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