Kidney Cancer - Holistic Of Health

Kidney Cancer

Overview

Kidney cancer is a condition which happens when cells in the kidney grow abnormally. It grows as a solid lump in one kidney. Kidney cancer, medically termed renal cell carcinoma (RCC), is a type of cancer that originates in the kidneys, the vital organs responsible for filtering waste products from the blood to form urine. While kidney cancer accounts for a relatively small percentage of all cancer diagnoses, it is essential to understand its nuances, including types, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options, and prognosis.

kidney-cancer
kidney-cancer

Types of Kidney Cancer:

  1. Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC):  Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC) is the most common type of kidney cancer, accounting for around 90% of cases.
  2. Transitional Cell Carcinoma (TCC): This type of  Transitional Cell Carcinoma (TCC) kidney cancer begins in the renal pelvis, where urine collects before passing into the ureter.

 

Symptoms of Kidney Cancer:

Symptoms of kidney cancer begin when the disease progresses chronically. Some of these are given below:

 

Causes of Kidney Cancer

Causes of kidney cancer are more common in males than females. There are the following reasons which increase the risk of kidney cancer in males:

  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Genetic kidney disease
  • Medication

Diagnosis of Kidney Cancer:

Kidney cancer can be diagnosed by following imaging tests. Imaging tests such as

  • Ultrasound
  • CT scans
  • MRI scans
  • PET scans can help visualize the kidneys and detect any abnormalities or tumours.
  • Biopsy: A biopsy involves removing a small sample of kidney tissue for examination under a microscope to confirm the presence of cancer cells and determine their type.
  • Blood and Urine Tests: Blood tests can assess kidney function, while urine tests can detect the presence of blood, proteins, or other substances that may indicate kidney cancer.

 

Treatment for Kidney Cancer:

  1. Surgery: Surgery is the primary treatment for localized kidney cancer. Depending on the size and stage of the tumour, options may include partial nephrectomy (removal of part of the kidney) or radical nephrectomy (removal of the entire kidney).
  2. Targeted Therapy: Targeted therapy drugs are designed to specifically target cancer cells and disrupt their growth and spread. These drugs may be used to treat advanced or metastatic kidney cancer.
  3. Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy works by stimulating the body’s immune system to recognize and attack cancer cells. Drugs known as checkpoint inhibitors are used in the treatment of advanced kidney cancer.
  4. Radiation Therapy: Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to target and destroy cancer cells. It is sometimes used to relieve symptoms or as a palliative treatment for advanced kidney cancer.

 

Prognosis and Outlook:

The prognosis for kidney cancer depends on various factors, including the stage of the cancer at diagnosis, the type of kidney cancer, and the individual’s overall health. Early detection and treatment can improve outcomes, particularly for localized kidney cancer. However, advanced or metastatic kidney cancer may have a poorer prognosis. Regular follow-up care, including imaging tests and blood work, is essential for monitoring the disease and detecting any recurrence or progression.

 

Conclusion:

Kidney cancer is a complex disease that requires a multidisciplinary approach to diagnosis and treatment. By understanding the types, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options, and prognosis associated with kidney cancer, individuals can make informed decisions about their healthcare and improve their chances of a positive outcome. Early detection, advances in medical technology, and ongoing research offer hope for better outcomes and improved quality of life for those affected by kidney cancer.

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