Four-point Peritoneal Flap Fixation in Preventing Lymphocele Formation Following Radical Prostatectomy

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Background: Symptomatic lymphocele following radical prostatectomy (RP) and concomitant bilateral extended pelvic lymph node dissection (ePLND) has a significant impact on postoperative recovery and may sometimes require surgical intervention. Objective: To report on the use of four-point peritoneal flap fixation (4PPFF) during RP to reduce lymphocele occurrence following PLND. Design, setting, and participants: Between April 2010 and May 2017, 1358 patients underwent RP with concomitant bilateral ePLND. From this cohort, 193 patients who had undergone PNLD with 4PPFF were matched in a 1:1 ratio with respect to age, body mass index, initial PSA, and number of lymph nodes removed to patients who had undergone PLND without 4PPFF. Intervention: 4PPFF was performed by suturing the cut end of the ventral parietal peritoneum at four points (to the anterior and lateral pelvic side wall on both sides) following PLND so that the peritoneal surface was exposed to the iliac vessels and obturator fossa. Outcome measurements and statistical analysis: All patients underwent ultrasound on postoperative days 6, 28, and 90 to test for the presence of lymphocele. For univariate analysis, a χ2 test and analysis of variance were applied, as appropriate. Statistical significance was set at p < 0.05, and all p values reported were two-sided. Results and limitations: There were no significant differences between the two groups with respect to intraoperative blood loss, positive surgical margin rate, Gleason score, clinical stage, and number of positive cores. Asymptomatic lymphocele was observed in four patients (2.07%) in the 4PPFF group compared to 16 patients (8.3%) without 4PPFF (p = 0.0058). Similarly, a significant difference in the incidence of symptomatic lymphocele was observed: two patients (1.03%) in the 4PPFF group versus nine patients (4.6%) without 4PPFF (p = 0.0322). There were no differences in other complication rates between the two groups. The limitations of the study are its retrospective and nonrandomised nature, with postoperative follow-up based on ultrasound imaging rather than computed tomography because of ethical considerations, which could have caused observer bias. Conclusions: 4PPFF is a safe and effective procedure in preventing lymphocele occurrence in patients undergoing RP with PLND. The increase in exposure of the PLND raw area to the peritoneal surface following this procedure may aid in increased absorption of accumulating lymph fluid. Further prospective randomised multicentre studies are warranted to confirm our observations. Patient summary: We report on the use of a surgical technique to decrease the collection of lymphatic fluid in the abdominal cavity following lymph node removal during radical removal of the prostate gland in patients with prostate cancer. Patients undergoing this procedure had significantly better outcomes when compared to patients operated on in the conventional approach. Four-point peritoneal flap fixation during radical prostatectomy decreases the occurence of lymphocele following extended pelvic lymph node dissection (PLND). The increased exposure of the peritoneal surface to the PLND raw area may aid in increased absorption of accumulating lymph fluid.




Stolzenburg, J. U., Arthanareeswaran, V. K. A., Dietel, A., Franz, T., Liatsikos, E., Kyriazis, I., … Do, H. M. (2018). Four-point Peritoneal Flap Fixation in Preventing Lymphocele Formation Following Radical Prostatectomy. European Urology Oncology, 1(5), 443–448.

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