Kidney cancer, the winning strategy: in Angers, two doctors invent a revolutionary treatment

In 2015, two doctors from the University Hospital of Angers developed a revolutionary technique for treating kidney cancer. Today, a hundred patients have been operated successfully.

A revolutionary technique in the treatment of kidney cancer. During a briefing on the subject at Angers University Hospital, patients treated by Dr. Antoine Bouvier and Dr. Pierre Bigot of this hospital testified about their experience. The West Mail. Since 2015, the interventional radiologist and the urologist have been working together to cure patients with kidney tumors, and until then the results have been spectacular. Three years ago, their ablation technique that reduced blood loss, postoperative pain and length of hospital stay was presented to the press as a world first.

A revolutionary therapeutic solution on a global scale

When a patient has kidney cancer, at least part of that organ must be removed. This operation is long, three to four hours, and often leads to hemorrhagic complications. Indeed, to limit the influx of blood while removing part of the kidney, the surgeon closes the artery connected to the kidney by pinching the blood vessel that feeds the organ. This interruption sometimes gives rise to definitive abnormalities of renal function. Once the tumor is removed, the specialist sutures the small vessels during open surgery. To overcome this problem, Dr. Antoine Bouvier and Professor Pierre Bigot have developed a revolutionary therapeutic solution on a global scale.

Before the removal of the tumor, the interventional radiologist catheterizes the renal artery and then embolizes the blood vessels that feed the tumor, respecting the others. The rest of the kidney continues to be vascularized and thus, the surgeon can take the organ optimally, controlling the risk of haemorrhage. "This technique has been made possible thanks to the hybrid room of the University Hospital of Angers and its very high imaging quality," says the hospital on its website.

"The length of hospitalization approaches that of robotics"

Indeed, it is 3D radiological images that allow Dr. Antoine Bouvier to perform arterial mapping of the kidney and optimal identification of the tumor. Thus, blood loss is reduced and postoperative pain much lighter. In addition, the duration of intervention has increased from three to four hours to one hour only.

So far, a hundred patients have already benefited from this innovative technique and were able to leave after three or four days after having been operated without any hemorrhagic complications, assures the University Hospital of Angers. "The duration of hospitalization approaches that of robotics with 3.8 days on average," explained Dr. Bouvier and Bigot at a conference on the subject last year. "We believe that this new approach to partial surgery could become standard and provide an improvement in patient safety by maintaining good ontological results," they concluded.

In France, 12,000 renal tumors are diagnosed each year. The disease accounts for 3% of all cancers and affects twice as many men as women. More than half of the cases are diagnosed by chance on abdominal imaging. At that time, the average patient is 65 years old. Kidney cancer is associated with smoking, overweight and obesity, or long-term dialysis therapy.