Background: Urological complications, namely ureteral leak and obstruction, remain a major source of morbidity after renal transplantation. Given that the existing literature on ureteral complications pertains mostly to deceased as opposed to living donors, we aimed to assess the risk factors for ureteral complications solely after living donor nephrectomy.
Methods: We identified 480 consecutive cases of renal transplantation after hand-assisted laparoscopic living donor nephrectomy at our institution from January 2008 to February 2013. We determined the incidence of ureteral complications and assessed the association with a number of perioperative factors, including age, sex, race, and body mass index of both the donor and recipient; arterial and ureteral anatomy; procurement by transplant surgeon versus urologist; history of previous renal transplantations; technique of ureteral anastomosis; use of ureteral stent; total ischemia time; serum creatinine on discharge; and need for temporary posttransplant hemodialysis.
Results: Among 480 renal transplantations after living donor nephrectomy, ureteral complications occurred in 18 (3.7%), including ureteral leak in 10 (2.1%) and ureteral stricture in 8 (1.6%). Only two factors were significantly associated with ureteral complications on multivariate analysis: increased donor age and no placement of ureteral stent.
Conclusions: Ureteral complications of renal transplants after living donor nephrectomy are uncommon. The use of a ureteral stent is protective against ureteral complications and increased donor age is associated with an increased incidence of ureteral complications.