Kidney cancer, or any cancer, is a difficult diagnosis to receive. At Saint Vincent Medical Group, we work with patients, their families, and other care givers to support the well-being of our patients and their treatment journey. Fortunately, most forms of kidney cancer are discovered before spreading to other organs, increasing the likelihood of a successful treatment.
What is Kidney Cancer?
Located on either side of the spine behind the abdomen, kidneys act as a filter to remove waste from the body. Cancer that begins in the kidneys occurs when cells begin growing out of control, forming a tumor. The most common form of kidney cancer in adults is called renal cell carcinoma, although there are more rare forms that occur.
Risk Factors for Kidney Cancer
Although the direct cause of kidney cancer is unknown, there are certain factors that might increase your risk of kidney cancer. For example, men are twice as likely to be diagnosed with kidney cancer. These risk factors include, but are not limited to:
- High Blood Pressure
- Genetic Conditions
- Family History
- Long-Term Use of Certain Pain Medications
Some risk factors, like smoking, can be mitigated. Others such as family history can’t be altered. With that in mind, having one or more risk factor does not guarantee that will lead to kidney cancer.
Symptoms of Kidney Cancer
Symptoms do not generally appear in the early stages of kidney cancer. It is becoming more common for kidney cancer to be found early due to routine checks or imaging, such as CT scans, for other problems. More advanced stages of kidney cancer feature symptoms that include:
- Blood in Urine
- Decreased Appetite
- Sudden Weight Loss
- Persistent Pain in the Side or Back
Treatment of Kidney Cancer
There are various treatments and approaches we take depending on the patient’s specific diagnosis. The stage of the cancer as well as other factors such as the age and overall health history of the patient determine the treatment plan. The earlier that the cancer is caught, the better. The following treatments are all options and will be discussed to decide the best course of action.
- Monitor the Growth
- Ablation of the Tumor Cryotherapy
- Targeted Therapy
- Removal of the Tumor via Robotic and Laparoscopic Surgery
Schedule an Appointment
Despite the difficulty of receiving a kidney cancer diagnosis, it is a highly treatable. We partner with our patients and any other care providers, to support the journey our patients travel with this diagnosis. Schedule an appointment with Saint Vincent Medical Group to start the process towards better health.