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Advances in Urology
Volume 2008 (2008), Article ID 479495, 10 pages
Review Article

Cryoablation for Small Renal Masses

1Department of Urology, Freeman Hospital, Freeman Road, High Heaton, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE7 7DN, UK
2Department of Urology, Sunderland Royal Hospital, Kayll Road, Sunderland SR4 7TP, UK

Received 13 March 2008; Accepted 19 May 2008

Academic Editor: J. Rubio

Copyright © 2008 J. L. Dominguez-Escrig et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Advances in imaging techniques (CT and MRI) and widespread use of imaging especially ultrasound scanning have resulted in a dramatic increase in the detection of small renal masses. While open partial nephrectomy is still the reference standard for the management of these small renal masses, its associated morbidity has encouraged clinicians to exploit the advancements in minimally invasive ablative techniques. The last decade has seen the rapid development of laparoscopic partial nephrectomy and novel ablative techniques such as, radiofrequency ablation (RFA), high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU), and cryoablation (CA). In particular, CA for small renal masses has gained popularity as it combines nephron-sparing surgery with a minimally invasive approach. Studies with up to 5-year followup have shown an overall and cancer-specific 5-year survival of 82% and 100%, respectively. This manuscript will focus on the principles and clinical applications of cryoablation of small renal masses, with detailed review of relevant literature.