Partial adrenalectomy: underused first line therapy for small adrenal tumors.

Journal Article (Journal Article;Review)

PURPOSE: Many patients with small adrenal masses undergo total adrenalectomy. We evaluated partial adrenalectomy outcomes by performing a comprehensive literature review. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed a PubMed search of the English language literature using the queries partial adrenalectomy and adrenal sparing surgery, and identified 317 and 155 articles, respectively. We excluded case reports or series with fewer than 5 patients, articles not focused on surgical management and those that did not indicate perioperative outcomes. The remaining articles were cross-referenced by author and institution to eliminate studies with redundant cases. Demographics, diagnosis, tumor characteristics, perioperative and functional outcomes, and recurrence data were collected when available. RESULTS: A total of 22 articles from a total of 22 first authors met our inclusion criteria, describing outcomes in a total of 417 patients. There has been an increasing trend toward partial adrenalectomy worldwide in the last 20 years. Partial adrenalectomy is most commonly done for Conn's syndrome, followed by pheochromocytoma. Most procedures are laparoscopic with minimal morbidity. The recurrence rate is only 3% and more than 90% of patients remain steroid independent. CONCLUSIONS: Partial adrenalectomy surgical outcomes and perioperative complications are similar to those reported for total adrenalectomy. When partial adrenalectomy is done for small adrenal lesions, the malignancy rate is negligible, the recurrence rate is low and most patients remain steroid-free at long-term followup. These data strongly support the acceptance of partial adrenalectomy as first line treatment for small adrenal masses.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kaye, DR; Storey, BB; Pacak, K; Pinto, PA; Linehan, WM; Bratslavsky, G

Published Date

  • July 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 184 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 18 - 25

PubMed ID

  • 20546805

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC3164765

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1527-3792

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.juro.2010.03.052


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States