Presentation Authors: Nirmish Singla*, Roy Elias, Rashed Ghandour, Yuval Freifeld, Isaac Bowman, Solomon Woldu, Jeffrey Gahan, Aditya Bagrodia, James Brugarolas, Hans Hammers, Vitaly Margulis, Dallas, TX
Introduction: With the approval of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI) for metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC), the role, timing, and safety of surgically excising the primary tumor remain unclear. We sought to evaluate the safety and feasibility of nephrectomy following receipt of ICI for RCC.
Methods: We reviewed our experience of RCC patients who underwent nephrectomy from 2016-2018 following exposure to nivolumab or combination ipilimumab/nivolumab. Demographics, IMDC risk score, and pathology were collected. Surgical outcomes including operative time (OT), estimated blood loss (EBL), hospital length of stay (LOS), readmission rates, and 30- and 90-day complication rates were analyzed using descriptive statistics.
Results: 11 nephrectomies (10 radical, 1 partial) were performed in 10 patients after ICI with median postoperative follow-up 98 days. 6 patients received 1-4 cycles of ipilimumab/nivolumab, while 5 received 2-12 infusions of nivolumab preoperatively. One patient with non-metastatic, synchronous bilateral renal masses underwent staged left radical nephrectomy and right partial nephrectomy. 5 surgeries were performed laparoscopically, and 4 patients underwent thrombectomy. IMDC score for metastatic patients was intermediate (7/9) or poor (2/9). One patient exhibited complete response (pT0) to ICI, and 3/4 patients who underwent metastasectomy for hepatic, pulmonary, or adrenal lesions exhibited no malignancy in any of the metastases resected. No patients experienced any major intraoperative complications, and all surgical margins were negative. Median OT, EBL, and LOS were 180 minutes, 100 mL, and 4 days, respectively. One patient died of progressive disease >3 months after surgery; one patient required thoracentesis and another required paracentesis of a sterile fluid collection in the hepatic resection bed. No complications were noted in the remaining 7 patients, none of whom required readmission.
Conclusions: Nephrectomy following ICI for RCC is safe and technically feasible with favorable surgical outcomes and pathologic response. As multimodal management in the era of ICI continues to evolve, use of neoadjuvant ICI for selected patients may warrant attention.