Kidney cancer is a disease that causes cells within the kidney to become malignant. These cells are cancerous and begin to form tumors. After the cells have grown significantly, the cancer appears primarily in the lining of the tubes within the kidney. Although the cancer is typically found before it becomes widespread, the tumors can grow exceptionally before they are actually located. It is important to note that this type of cancer can be successfully treated if caught early on.
There are several factors that increase the chance of developing kidney cancer. Moreover, the disease occurs most often in people over the age of 40. Smoking and weight also increase the chance of developing kidney cancer. Patients that smoke cigarettes double the chance of obtaining kidney cancer. Anyone overweight and men are at a higher risk to receive the cancer over women and people who are more physically fit.
Kidney cancer is also affected by high blood pressure and family history. The risk of developing the disease is higher for siblings and patients with certain genetic conditions. There is also a chance to develop the cancer if the patient has used certain pain medications for an extended period of time. This includes both prescription drugs as well as popular over-the-counter medications.
Kidney Cancer Symptoms
Kidney cancer symptoms include significant weight loss, blood in the urine, fatigue, constant pain in the side and abdomen, fever, lumps in the side, growths in the abdomen, tiredness and an increased feeling of poor health. In most cases, these symptoms are not a diagnosis of cancer. There are cases where an infection can cause similar symptoms. However, anyone experiencing these symptoms should consult a doctor. This is an important step to receiving a diagnosis and treatment. The earlier the cancer is detected, the better the chance of a successful treatment.
A physical exam is the primary procedure doctors use to identify a problem. This exam checks patient health for high blood pressure and fever. The examination also checks the side and the abdomen for growths and tumors. Blood test and urine tests are also effective procedures for diagnosing the cancer. The urine is examined for the appearance of blood as well as other symptoms of the cancer. The blood is examined to check how well the kidneys are functioning. The doctor observes the levels of different substances within the blood, such as creatinine. An above average of creatinine in the blood may indicate that the kidneys are not functioning properly.
Kidney Cancer Treatment
Kidney cancer treatment will begin after a diagnosis from a doctor. Patients that have developed kidney cancer may treat the disease with surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. In some cases, the patient may require a mixture of different treatments.
Kidney cancer treatment is used to manage the pain as well as other symptoms. The treatments help ease emotional stress and relieve the side effects caused by certain therapies. Some doctors offer clinical trials that use newer research to develop new kidney cancer treatments.
Surgery is one of the most commonly practiced treatments for the disease. The surgery is used to treat the cancer in the kidney and the area around the tumor. There is a procedure used to remove the kidney that is commonly referred to as nephrectomy. There are different forms of nephrectomy; it simply depends on the stage of the cancer and the size of the tumor.
Radiation therapy is another type of treatment for kidney cancer. This therapy includes a high-energy laser that removes cancer cells. However, this treatment only affects cancer cells within the affected area. This process should be completed 5 days a week for several weeks to effectively treat the cancer.
Chemotherapy is another effective treatment for kidney cancer. Kidney cancer treatments help to reduce pain and provide a way to reduce symptoms associated with the disease.