Richard E. Link, MD, PhD, presented Expanding Your Robotic Toolbox for Treating UPJ and Proximal Ureteral Obstruction: Not Everything is a Nail” at the 27th Annual Innovations in Urologic Practice conference on September 22nd, 2023.

How to cite: Link, Richard E. Expanding Your Robotic Toolbox for Treating UPJ and Proximal Ureteral Obstruction: Not Everything is a Nail.” September 2023. Accessed Jul 2024.

Expanding Your Robotic Toolbox for Treating UPJ and Proximal Ureteral Obstruction: Not Everything is a Nail – Summary

Richard E. Link, MD, PhD, presents and demonstrates robotic-assisted options for the treatment of UPJ and Proximal Ureteral Obstruction (UPJO) using pyeloplasty. Dr. Link begins by exploring the history of UPJO treatment, acknowledging that pyeloplasty has only recently begun to rival endopyelotomy as a treatment option, despite the evidence supporting the long-term success of pyeloplasty over endopyelotomy.

In this presentation, Dr. Link discusses:

  • Patient evaluation for pyeloplasty versus endopyelotomy
  • Adjuncts to pyeloplasty for UPJO treatment
  • Case-based examples of the adjuncts in action
  • Robotic technology used in facilitating surgery to treat UPJO

Dr. Link concludes by urging those who are already comfortable managing primary UPJO with pyeloplasty to begin familiarizing themselves with the adjuncts to the operation. He highlights that these adjuncts are more successful for patients and more accessible to urologists now than they were in the prior decade.


About The 27th Annual Innovations in Urologic Practice:

Presented by co-chairs Mohit Khera, MD, MBA, MPH, and Michael Coburn, MD, FACS, the Innovations in Urologic Practice conference provides a detailed review and commentary on multiple genitourinary and urologic diseases. Among the featured oncological topics are bladder cancer and immunotherapies, as well as upper tract cancer management, prostate cancer, including state-of-the-art imaging, focal therapy, and MRI. Experts also discuss new tools and techniques for nephrectomy and treating advanced renal cell carcinoma. In terms of general urological approaches, the conference also includes pelvic reconstruction and trauma; men’s health topics like male infertility, andrology, and sexual dysfunction; OAB and voiding dysfunctions; and ways to diagnose and treat infections in the urology patient.

For further educational activities from this conference, visit our collection page.


Richard E. Link, MD, PhD, is a professor and board-certified and fellowship-trained urologist specializing in the treatment of urologic disease affecting the kidney, ureter, adrenal gland and prostate. Dr. Link holds the Carlton-Smith Endowed Chair in urologic education at the Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) in Houston, Texas and directs the BCM division of endourology and minimally invasive surgery. He serves as director of living donor procurement for several major kidney transplant programs in Houston, including Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center, Texas Children’s Hospital, and the Houston Methodist Hospital. Dr. Link focuses on the use of laparoscopic, robotic-assisted, percutaneous, and endoscopic techniques to treat kidney and prostate tumors, benign prostatic hypertrophy, renal and ureteral obstruction, and urinary tract stones and has been an early pioneer in the development of laparoendoscopic single-site donor nephrectomy.

Dr. Link earned both his MD and PhD in molecular and cellular physiology at Stanford University in California and completed an internship and residency at BCM before completing a fellowship at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland. Dr. Link also has a strong interest in applying single site robotic technology using the da Vinci SP platform to retroperitoneal and transvesical urologic surgery. He has published numerous papers and earned many awards, including the Fulbright and Jaworski LLP Faculty Excellence Award for Teaching and Evaluation at BCM.