Complete Surgical Metastasectomy of Renal Cell Carcinoma in the Post-Cytokine Era

Timothy D. Lyon, R. Houston Thompson, Paras H. Shah, Christine M. Lohse, Stephen A. Boorjian, Brian A. Costello, John C. Cheville, Bradley C. Leibovich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Purpose:Data supporting complete metastasectomy of metastatic renal cell carcinoma were derived primarily from the era of cytokine therapy. Whether complete metastasectomy remains beneficial in patients who receive more recently approved systemic therapies has not been well studied. The objective of this study was to examine survival outcomes among patients treated with complete metastasectomy in the era of targeted therapy and checkpoint blockade availability.Materials and Methods:We queried our institutional nephrectomy registry and identified 586 patients who underwent partial or radical nephrectomy of unilateral, sporadic renal cell carcinoma with a first occurrence of metastasis between 2006 and 2017. Of these patients 158 were treated with complete metastasectomy. Associations of complete metastasectomy with cancer specific and overall survival were assessed using Cox proportional hazards models.Results:Median followup after the diagnosis of metastasis was 3.9 years, during which 403 patients died, including 345 of renal cell carcinoma. Of the patients treated with complete metastasectomy 147 (93%) did not receive any systemic treatment of the index metastatic lesion(s). Two-year cancer specific survival was significantly greater in patients with vs without complete metastasectomy (84% vs 54%, p <0.001). After adjusting for age, gender, and the timing, number and location of metastases complete metastasectomy was associated with a significantly reduced likelihood of death from renal cell carcinoma (HR 0.47, 95% CI 0.34-0.65, p <0.001).Conclusions:Complete surgical resection of metastases of renal cell carcinoma was associated with improved cancer specific survival in the post-cytokine era. It may be considered in appropriate patients after a process of shared decision making.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-281
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • carcinoma
  • kidney neoplasms
  • metastasectomy
  • mortality
  • neoplasm metastasis
  • renal cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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