Kidney | Open Nephrectomy

Description of Procedure

This is a surgical procedure where, through a fairly long, open incision, your urologist removes one of your kidneys, often for kidney cancer.


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After Procedure

If you have questions that are not answered here, please contact us.

What to Expect

  • As this is a fairly major operation, you will likely be in hospital for several (usually 3-5) days.
  • It takes 2-3 weeks for the pathology report to become available. Your urologist will review the results with you at your next office visit.



Report any of the following to your doctor:

Redness, foul-smelling drainage or separation of incision site.
Fever over 38.5 C.
Severe pain unrelieved by medication.
Leg pain or swelling.
Nausea or vomiting which persists.



You may eat and drink normally when you go home. However, it is advised that you eat light foods for several days, until normal bowel function returns.




You may walk as much as you wish, but do not exercise or lift more than 20 lbs for 6 weeks after surgery.

You may drive short distances when comfortable to do so, but no extensive travelling for 6 weeks after surgery.



You may resume your normal home medications, but avoid blood thinners (aspirin, plavix, warfarin/coumadin) until told safe to do so.

Use stool softeners as needed to avoid constipation.


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