Kidney Cancer: Stages, Symptoms, Diagnostic
Kidneys are bean-shaped organs, located behind our abdominal organs, with one kidney on each side of our spine whose major function is to detoxify our blood. However, due to unknown factors, masses of cells or tumours may develop in them which can account to kidney cancer.
In India, out of the total registered cancer cases, 3% accounts to kidney cancer. It generally occurs after 50 years of age, with a male to female ratio of 3:1.
Types of kidney cancer
Based on the location, size and extent of tumour growth, kidney cancer is of following types:
- Renal cell carcinoma: It is the most common type among adults and usually starts in the inner lining of the renal tubes. It might spread to other body parts.
- Clear cell renal cell carcinoma: Also known as ccRCC, it is the another most common type of kidney cancer. In this, the tumour cells which develop are clear in appearance, hence the name ccRCC.
- Other rare types such as papillary renal cell carcinoma and translocation renal cell carcinoma, may be found in young adults and teenagers. In both the cases, the tumour is located in the renal tubes.
- Benign kidney tumours accounts for another type of kidney cancer. This tumour is mostly non-cancerous in nature and may be treated by normal surgical procedures. Some of the benign kidney tumours are oncocytoma, angiomyolipoma etc.
Stages of kidney cancer
In Stage I and II, the tumour is small and confined to the inner lining and walls of the kidneys. In Stage III, tumour may become invasive or involve lymph nodes. In Stage IV, the tumour becomes large and aggressive and spreads to other parts of the body.
Risk factors of kidney cancer
Like any other cancer, the cause of kidney cancer is still unknown and in most of the cases it is diagnosed accidently. However, there are some factors which increase the chances of developing this disease.
Smoking or excessive use of cannabis; obesity; having a prior history of chronic kidney disease or being on dialysis; frequent or excessive use of certain drugs such as phenacetin; long-term exposure to asbestos or cadmium; rare genetic syndrome such as Von Hippel Lindau disease, Birt Hogge Dube Syndrome etc.
By making minor changes in lifestyle, some of the risk factors can be avoided, thus, lowering the chances of acquiring kidney cancer.
Signs and symptoms of kidney cancer
In most of the cases, at early stages, no symptoms are seen; yet kidney cancer may be identified by the following symptoms:
Haematuria i.e., blood in urine; loss of appetite; pain between ribs and hips; unidentified weight loss; anaemia; lower back pain usually on one side; fever or fatigue.
On identification of any symptom for a considerable time, one must immediately contact the specialists or doctors. In Ghaziabad and Delhi- NCR, Yashoda Superspeciality Hospital & Cancer Institute provides a wide range of specialists in kidney and urinary diseases:
Diagnostic procedures of kidney cancer
Mostly the diagnosis of kidney cancer is done as a matter of chance along with other diseases. If the suspicion arises, the doctor might suggest a number of tests or exams to ensure the certainty of the cancer. There is no fixed test or diagnostic procedure for the identification of kidney cancer, therefore, a number of tests may have to be performed. These usually include:
- Complete Metabolic Panel (CMP) and Complete Blood Count (CBC): These are done to check the function of organs and the blood for signs of any disease.
- Urinalysis: This is done to check for any infection, traces of blood and protein in the urine.
- Serum creatinine levels or other kidney tests to ensure the good functioning of kidneys.
- Imaging test: CT scan, MRI, Ultrasound, X-Rays, Bone Scan etc. are done to know the spread or extent and size of the tumour or abnormal tissue.
- Biopsy: Biopsy of tumour is done to identify its type.
All the above procedures should be done in consultation with specialists and under their supervision to procure the best and reliable results. In this regard, Yashoda Superspeciality Hospital & Cancer Institute, Sanjay Nagar is the best hospital in Delhi NCR and Ghaziabad, with its cutting edge and advanced technology and machines, supervised by a dedicated team of experts and specialists; thus, providing the best testing facilities in the whole of Ghaziabad.
Best doctors & specialists for kidney cancer in Delhi NCR
Dr. Ravinder Singh Bhadoria- MBBS, DNB (General Medicine), DNB (Nephrology), Nephrologist/Renal Specialist
Dr. Ravinder Singh Bhadoria is a well-experienced nephrologist and Senior Consultant at Yashoda Superspeciality Hospital & Cancer Institute, Sanjay Nagar, with 12 years of experience. He is a trained nephrologist with great repute nationally, as well as abroad for his ethical as well as professional clinical approach.
Best treatments for kidney cancer in Delhi NCR
On diagnosing the stage and type of tumour, the doctors may suggest appropriate treatments such as:
- Active surveillance: At regular intervals, the doctor will suggest tests and imaging to keep a check on the tumour, aided by drugs. This is done to check whether the drugs are helping in prevention of the progression of cancerous cells or not. It is usually done at early stages of cancer.
- Ablation: This procedure is performed on small tumours. In this, the tumour is destroyed with extreme cold or hot gases passed through a needle-like probe which is placed through the skin to reach the tumour.
- Partial nephrectomy: In this procedure, the doctor removes the infected and diseased part of the kidney, leaving the healthy part. It is usually performed in stages I and II. 4. Radical nephrectomy: This is performed when the tumour becomes large and has infected the entire kidney. In this, the whole kidney is removed to curb the spread of cancer to other organs of the body. Later stages, i.e., III and IV require this treatment.
All these treatments require a team of a multitude of healthcare experts such as radiologists, urologists, nephrologists, pathologists, oncologists etc. Yashoda Superspeciality Hospital & Cancer Institute, Sanjay Nagar provides the best experts and healthcare providers in whole of Delhi NCR and Ghaziabad, with its advanced technology and comprehensive cancer care unit that follows trans-disciplinary and multi modality approach and provides supportive care.