Roughly 50,000 Americans are diagnosed with kidney cancer per year. Most of these cancers are small tumors (small renal masses) that are often found during screening for other problems. Because of this, there are more surgeries scheduled to remove them. These surgeries can be difficult because of the location of the tumors if they are on the posterior side of the kidney, and because patients who have had previous abdominal surgery can have scar tissue that disrupts identification of normal anatomy.

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