What Is Kidney Cancer?
Kidneys are two bean-shaped organs, each about the size of your fist. They are located behind your abdomen, one on each side of your spine. Like any other organs in human body kidneys can sometimes develop cancer. The adult the most common cancer is renal cell, which start in the cells that line the small tubes within your kidneys.
Kidney cancer seldom causes many problems in its early stages. But as the tumour grows you may notice blood in your urine, weight loss or even a back pain. Kidney cancer can spread to other organs in your body.
What are the Symptoms of kidney cancer?
Kidney cancer rarely causes any signs of symptoms in its early stages. However, as the stages increases, the most common symptoms include blood in your urine. It can be detected when you urinate or your doctor may detect it by urinalysis.
The other possible symptoms includes as follows:
- A back pain, just below the ribs that doesn’t go away
- Weight loss
- Intermitted fever
- Pain in other parts of the body, if the cancer has metastasized
What causes Kidney Cancer?
Your kidneys are the part of the urinary system, which removes waste and excess fluid and electrolytes from your blood, and also controls the production of red bloods cells and regulates your blood pressure.
Renal cell carcinoma, which accounts for most kidney cancer usually, begins in the cells that line the small tubes that make up the part of each nephron. In most cases, renal cell tumour grow as a single mass, but often there can be more than one tumour in a kidney or develop tumours in both the kidney.
The transitional cell carcinoma kidney cancer usually, develops in the tissue that forms the tubes connecting the kidneys to the bladder.
What causes kidney cells to become cancerous isn’t clear. Research has identified certain factors that appeal to increase the risk of developing both renal and transitional cell kidney cancer.
How is Kidney Cancer Diagnosed?
Following tests are done in order to help diagnose kidney cancer:
Intravenous pyelogram (IVP) – The test involves a contrast dye, which is injected into a vein in your arm. After injection a series of x-rays is taken as the dye moves through your kidneys, ureters and bladder.
Ultrasound examination – It is not an x-ray. It uses high frequency sound waves to generate images of your internal organs. And is visible on the computer screen.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan – More detailed images are produced then by conventional x-rays. It uses magnetic fields and radio waves to generate cross-sectional images of your body.
Biopsy – A sample of your tissue is removed and examined by the doctor under a microscope. It is commonly perform on tumours that develop in a ureter or in the kidney pelvis – area at the center of the kidneys where urine collects.
Treatment Options for Kidney Cancer?
The treatment options depend on the stage of the disease, general health and age, and other factors. Doctor will examine your body and develop a treatment plan.
The most common treatment options available are: surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.
Radiation therapy – The radiation therapy involves the use of high-energy rays to kill cancerous cells. Depending upon the treatment it may given alone or together with chemotherapy.
Chemotherapy – It is the use of drugs to kill cancer cells.