Objective To discuss complications of simultaneous bilateral percutaneous nephrolithotomy (SB-PCNL) when compared with unilateral percutaneous nephrolithotomy and survey surgeon preference in bilateral stone disease management. Patients and Methods A database of all participating percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) patients who underwent treatment at Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital within a 10-year period from 2006 to 2015 by a single surgeon (JL) was utilized. Perioperative data, as well as complications, defined according to the Clavien grading system, were recorded. A survey of members of the Endourological Society was performed regarding surgical management in the setting of bilateral stone disease. Results A total of 563 patients were identified over the study period with 129 undergoing SB-PCNL. Overall, SB-PCNL patients had a longer procedure (176.9 vs 115.6 minutes, P <.0001), were more likely to undergo a secondary procedure (73% vs 44, P <.001), and had a longer hospital stay (3.2 vs 2.3 days, P <.001). Notably, there were no differences in the number or the severity of complications between the 2 groups. A total of 153 endourologists completed the survey. Of these endourologists, 58 (38%) performed bilateral PCNL under anesthesia. The top reasons for electing not to perform bilateral PCNLs included the duration of bilateral procedures (53%), bilateral renal injury (48%), and rare performance of bilateral surgery (35%). Conclusion Although the procedure length was longer in the SB-PCNL group, there were similar rates of complications and severity between unilateral PCNL and SB-PCNL. A majority of endourologists surveyed do not perform bilateral PCNL but would perform bilateral ureteroscopy with the duration of the procedure and concern for bilateral renal injury representing the most common reasons.
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