What is a nephrectomy?A nephrectomy is a surgery to remove part of or an entire kidney. When the entire kidney is removed, it is called a complete or radical nephrectomy. When a partial nephrectomy is performed, only the damaged or diseased part of a kidney is removed. In children, this surgery is performed when a kidney is diseased or badly injured.
At Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, this surgery often can be performed using robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery. In laparoscopic surgery, a viewing tube called a laparoscope is inserted through a tiny incision. Robot-assisted surgery allows surgeons to perform complex procedures through tiny incisions. We are the only pediatric hospital in Wisconsin using robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery in children, and our urology surgeons use robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery to treat a variety of conditions previously treated only with open, or traditional, surgery. The advantages of robot-assisted surgery for the patient may include less pain, less blood loss, less scarring, shorter hospital stays and shorter recovery time. Learn more about robotic laparoscopic surgery.