Resection of the Spermatic Vessels and Final Steps

■ Resection of the spermatic vessels is the ultimate step.

■ The lumbar portion of the vascular pedicle is freed from the posterior peritoneum down to where it joins the ureter.

■ Now the instruments will be rearranged and the surgeon will use the iliac port for his instruments and the flank port for the laparoscope.

■ The spermatic vessels will be dissected down to the distal ligature and completely removed extraperi-toneally.

■ The lymphatic tissue and the spermatic vessels are placed in an endoscopic bag and extracted through the iliac incision.

■ Drainage is not necessary.


■ Adequate homeostasis is of a crucial importance. Even minimal bleedings must be controlled and stopped instantly to provide a bloodless surgical field. The quality of the dissection had improved significantly since the introduction of grasping forceps for bipolar coagulation and dissection. These instruments are ideal for the dissection of delicate vessels such as the vena cava and renal veins. Broader bipolar forceps allows precise hemostasis without damaging the surrounding structures. The Harmonic scalpel may be used as well for a bloodless transection of the lymphatic tissue.

■ A protruding® segment of bowel can cause insufficient exposure and may render the operation difficult, dangerous, and even impossible. The fan retractor used for the liver can retract the duodenum as well. Retraction of the bowel can be achieved by a surgical sponge held with a traumatic grasper. An additional trocar can be inserted in the midline just caudal to the costal margin for the introduction of a second fan retractor if required in exceptional cases. Exposure could be achieved in all instances and we have never converted to open surgery because of insufficient exposure.

■ Acute bleeding is the most frequent complication. A small surgical sponge that is held with a traumatic grasper can be a substitute for the surgeon's finger to be used for dissection, retraction, or pressure to control bleeding vessels so that subsequent measures can be taken without the pressure of time. Small defects in veins and even the vena cava can be sealed by direct application of fibrin. A larger defect is approximated with an atraumatic grasper with or without the use of endoscopic clips even if they are not placed appropriately and tend to fall off then the defect is sealed by fibrin. The strength of the repair should be enhanced by the additional use of surgicel (oxidized regenerated cellulose) or similar hemostatic substances such as tachocomb. In exceptional conditions laparoscopic vascular suture repairs are feasible if needed (5,15,21).

■ Instruments for general and vascular surgery must be available in the operating room in the event of bleeding that may not be controlled by endoscopic means.


■ To lower morbidity, retroperitoneal lymphadenectomy was modified over the past 35 years from extended suprahilar to bilateral infrahilar. Subsequently, a modified unilateral approach and then nerve-sparing procedures were refined.

■ These operative refinements were not associated with increase in relapse rates.

■ Significant factors for relapse include pathological stage (p < 0.001) and adjuvant chemotherapy in stage II disease (p < 0.001) (3).

■ The future in this field may encompass the development of a technique that could exactly locate a sentinel lymph node for testicular cancer. Thereby the retroperitoneal lymph node dissection, with its diagnostic accuracy and its therapeutic value, could be applied to selected patients only (22,23).


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