Approximately 5% of all urothelial tumors in adults arise from the upper tracts. While the gold standard treatment is open nephroureterectomy, laparoscopic nephroureterectomy is becoming increasingly popular. Oncologic principles dictate that complete excision of the transmural ureter and bladder cuff and avoidance of urine spillage are paramount. This can be challenging laparoscopically and multiple techniques have been described. We review described surgical techniques, published oncologic data, as well as advantages and disadvantages for each technique including open excision, cystoscopic detachment and ligation, laparoscopic stapling, ureteral intussusception, transurethral resection of ureteral orifice (TURUO) and modifications of TURUO. To date, no controlled studies have been performed demonstrating one technique's superiority.
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