Nephrectomy: Procedure Type, Recovery, Vital Considerations, Etc.

Are you observing the signs such as dental disease, loss of appetite, blood in urine, diarrhea, weight loss, frequency of urination? Then is there a likelihood that your pet has some issues related to the kidney or ureter? In this article, we will elaborate on the invasive nephrectomy procedure. Not only this, you will get to know the effectiveness of the procedure, recovery, considerations, and prevention. So, let’s begin!
Nephrectomy is a surgical practice to remove the kidney and the linked ureter. This procedure is ideal for treating the kidney and ureter condition permanently. However, it is not a common disease among pets. Due to which nephrectomy occurs include cancer, trauma to the kidney or ureter, persistent infection, and ureteral abnormalities. According to the condition, nephrectomy is the primary intervention in the cancer of the kidney and other advanced diseases of the kidney infection. Plus, the veterinarian will diagnose the condition, and the veterinarian will plan the treatment accordingly. If the situation is highly critical, the veterinarian will recommend taking the patient to any board-certified veterinarian.

Surgical Procedure

Before the surgical procedure starts, some essential steps are to be taken. First, monitor the condition of the kidney with the glomerular filtration rate (GFR). So, if the cancer is detected in the condition, complete staging is crucial to know where is cancer spread in the whole body. Further, it is necessary to correct the abnormalities before starting the procedure.

According to the condition evaluated, this procedure will be performed if the acute trauma is detected. More than that, general anesthesia is necessary for this procedure as it is an invasive procedure. The anesthesia is safe for this surgical procedure because care is necessary while choosing the anesthetic drugs that do not affect kidneys.
At first, the dog is placed on its back to make an incision on the abdomen under the sternum. In addition, it is important to visualize the kidney to explore the abnormalities. Next, the kidney is removed from the parenchyma, renal artery, and identified vein. Further, the vein and renal artery are tied and then cut. Next, the ureter linked with the kidney is tied and then cut. Afterward, the kidney and ureter are removed. Now it is crucial to check the signs of bleeding. Lastly, the patient is closed, and the recovery phase begins.

Effectiveness of the Procedure

The effectiveness of the nephrectomy is amazing because it will not let the kidney and ureter conditions reverse or reoccur. Thus, the effects of nephrectomy are irreversible and permanent. The other treatments are also used to prevent to eradicate the disease. For instance, surgeons might recommend partial nephrectomy or ureter resection in the bladder. The partial nephrectomy will spare the kidney functions, so the kidney is not under strain.
Also, the renal functions smoothly without any strain in the animals. Nonetheless, the partial nephrectomy will increase the risk of bleeding after the surgical procedure, and there are chances to remove the entire kidney. In addition, in some cases, the trauma to the ureter is indicated with ureteroneocystostomy. Therefore, this procedure does not provide the best outcome for the patient as nephrectomy does.


After the surgical procedure, the painkillers are provided to the pet. Also, the medications will prevent postoperative pain and will be kept under observation for a few weeks. But the surgical wound should heal after 14 days of the surgical procedure, and after that, the removal of the sutures becomes obvious.
The suture might swell, infection, redness, and discharge during the recovery period. Thus, it is vital to observe the suturing site. These complications can be avoided with the bloodwork or physically examining the patient.

If the nephrectomy is suggested due to cancer, follow-up appointments become essential. As well, it is crucial to recommend chemotherapy and continuously monitor the spread of the disease. The imaging of the diseases is possible with an x-ray or ultrasound of the chest or abdomen.

Crucial Considerations

The symptoms of nephrectomy relate to kidney and ureter damages. Furthermore, when the condition is not treated, it makes the kidney cancerous. For example, the nephrectomy's major risks include bleeding and urine leakage in the abdomen. In addition, it is crucial to ensure that the kidney stays healthy for a long duration.

Prevention from the Disease

The prevention of nephrectomy is difficult because it persists due to cancer and trauma. Often, the best option to prevent the cancer of the kidney is by healthily maintaining them. For instance, the kidney should function well, and there are some steps that you need to take to ensure the healthy state of your pet.

  • The pet should be drinking an ample amount of water. So, a hydrated pet will have fewer kidney disease chances.
  • A balanced diet is necessary to prevent kidney diseases. However, a special diet related to urinary is not important.
  • Other than that, the pets which face persistent kidney diseases will have an infection that leads to nephrectomy eventually. Therefore, some additional steps are crucial to be taken. Check them out!
  • The special diet is related to a kidney stone.
  • Management in a medical way.
  • Monitor the pet to check the infections such as straining to urination, blood in urine, and any accident.