Percutaneous stone removal
percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) at our academic hospital. The primary objective was to determine the percentage successful PCNL procedures performed.
Methods. The study included 169 patients (116 males, 53 females; mean age 45 years, range 6 - 75 years) treated with PCNL in our Department of Radiology between 1997 and 2004. The data of all the PCNLs done at the vascular suite from 1997 to 2004 were retrieved from the Department of Radiology records and a retrospective data analysis was performed. Results. A total of 169 patients underwent PCNL treatment from 1997 until 2004. Of these, 121 (72%) had one procedure and 38 (21%) had a second PCNL procedure,
while 9 (6%) of the patients had three or more attempts. The average number of PCNLs performed was 21 (5 – 35) per year. The average theatre time was 121 minutes (30 - 250). The two complications documented were blood loss in 13 (7%) and postoperative fever in 3
(1.75%) patients. Most of the stones were located in the lower pole of the kidney (43%) with 36% located in the renal pelvis, 14% in the midpole and 6% in the upper
pole. One hundred and twenty (71%) patients were stone-free after PCNL treatment. Incomplete removal of stones was noted in 30 (18%) patients and the procedure was a complete failure in 19 (11%) of the patients. Conclusion. PCNL has proved to be a safe and effective method of stone treatment in our academic setting. Our complication rate was within acceptable limits. We may improve our success rate if we make the nephrostomy
tract above the 12th rib in the treatment of midpole stones.
South African Journal of Radiology Vol. 10 (3) 2006: pp. 6-8