Pediatric, Partial Nephrectomy Restores 5-Year-Old to Normal Activities


“The first thing we thought was, ‘Oh my gosh, I hope this is not the C-word,’” says Angela Lomeli about her son, Alex, age 5. “That was the scary part.”

It was a parent’s worst fear when Angela and her family learned about a suspicious growth discovered on Alex’s left kidney. At the time, Alex’s parents were told he would have to go through major surgery to remove and analyze the cyst. But his mom, Angela, wanted more options for Alex, and sought other opinions.

“We wanted a small, minimally invasive procedure,” she explains. “And we were searching and we found and came across UCLA.”

They came to the UCLA Department of Urology where they met surgeon and urologist Jim Hu, MD. With careful examination and imaging, Dr. Hu assessed Alex. Because of the size and the location of the cyst, Dr. Hu recommended something different for Alex. He offered to remove and biopsy the cyst without major surgery – using a new robotic procedure. So new was it, in fact, that Alex made history as the first pediatric patient to undergo a robotic partial nephrectomy at UCLA.

To learn more about Alex’s treatment and what happened next, click on the video above.

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