Symptoms of Kidney cancer
Kidney cancer is cancer that originates in the kidneys. Your kidneys are two bean-shaped organs, each about the size of your fist. They’re located behind your abdominal organs, with one kidney on each side of your spine. Kidney cells become malignant or cancerous and grow out of control, forming a tumour. Almost all kidney cancers first appear in the lining of tiny tubes called tubules in the kidney. This type of kidney cancer is called renal cell carcinoma. Their main job is to filter your blood, removing waste products and making urine.
Kidney cancer rarely causes signs or symptoms in its early stages. As the tumour grows larger, symptoms may appear. You may have one or more of these kidney cancer symptoms:-
• Blood in your urine, which may appear pink, red or cola colored
• A lump in your side or abdomen
• Loss of appetite
• A pain in your side that doesn’t go away
• Weight loss that occurs for no known reason
• Fever – not due to cold or flu
• Extreme fatigue
• Anemia – a condition in which the number of red blood cells is below normal
• Swelling in your ankles or legs
Kidney cancer that spreads to other parts of your body may cause other symptoms, such as:
• Shortness of breath
• Coughing up blood
• Bone pain
Treatment for Kidney Cancer
Removing the affected kidney (nephrectomy)
Radical nephrectomy involves the removal of the kidney, a border of healthy tissue and the adjacent lymph nodes. The adrenal gland also may be removed.
Removing the tumor from the kidney (nephron-sparing surgery)
During this procedure, also called partial nephrectomy, the surgeon removes the tumor and a small margin of healthy tissue that surrounds it, rather than removing the entire kidney.
Other types of Treatment for Kidney Cancer
For some people, surgery isn’t an option. In these situations, kidney cancer treatments may include:-
Treatment to freeze cancer cells (cryoablation)
During cryoablation, a special needle is inserted through your skin and into your kidney tumor using X-ray guidance. Gas in the needle is used to cool down or freeze the cancer cells.
Treatment to heat cancer cells (radiofrequency ablation)
During radiofrequency ablation, a special needle is inserted through your skin and into your kidney tumor using X-ray guidance. An electrical current is run through the needle and into the cancer cells, causing the cells to heat up or burn.
Treatments for advanced and recurrent kidney cancer
Kidney cancer that recurs and kidney cancer that spreads to other parts of the body may not be curable, but may be controlled with treatment. In these situations, treatments may include:-
Surgery to remove as much of the kidney tumor as possible
Even when surgery can’t remove all of your cancer, in some cases it may be helpful to remove as much of the cancer as possible. Surgery may also be used to remove cancer that has spread to another area of the body.
Drugs that use your immune system to fight cancer (biological therapy)
Biological therapy (immunotherapy) uses your body’s immune system to fight cancer. Drugs in this category include interferon and aldesleukin (Proleukin), which are synthetic versions of chemicals made in your body. Side effects of these drugs include chills, fever, nausea, vomiting and loss of appetite.
Treatment that targets specific aspects of your cancer (targeted therapy)
Targeted treatments block specific abnormal signals present in kidney cancer cells that allow them to proliferate. These drugs have shown promise in treating kidney cancer that has spread to other areas of the body.
Types Of Kidney Cancer
There are several types of kidney cancer, but most cases are renal cell cancer. This is sometimes called renal adenocarcinoma or renal cell carcinoma or hypernephroma.
Renal cell cancer
This type of cancer develops from a cell in a kidney tubule, which becomes cancerous. The cancer grows and forms into a tumour within the kidney. RCC usually grows as a single tumor within a kidney, sometimes there are 2 or more tumors in one kidney or even tumors in both kidneys at the same time. As the tumour grows:-
- The affected kidney tends to become larger. In time the tumour may grow through the wall of the kidney and invade nearby tissues and organs, such as the muscles around the spine, the liver, the nearby large blood vessels, etc.
- Some cells may break off into the lymph channels or bloodstream. The cancer may then spread to nearby lymph nodes or to other areas of the body (metastasise).
Papillary renal cell carcinoma
This is the second most common subtype – about 1 in 10 RCCs are of this type. These cancers form little finger-like projections (called papillae) in some, if not most, of the tumor.
Chromophobe renal cell carcinoma
This subtype accounts for about 5% (5 cases in 100) of RCCs. The cells of these cancers are also pale, like the clear cells, but are much larger and have certain other features that can be recognized.
Rare types of renal cell carcinoma
These subtypes are very rare, each making up less than 1% of RCCs, like as Collecting duct RCC.Multilocular cystic RCC,Medullary carcinoma,Mucinous tubular and spindle cell carcinoma,Neuroblastoma-associated RCC.
Other types of kidney cancers
Other types of kidney cancers include transitional cell carcinomas, Wilms tumors, and renal sarcomas.
Transitional cell carcinoma
5 to 10 are transitional cell carcinomas (TCCs), also known as urothelial carcinomas. Transitional cell carcinomas don’t start in the kidney itself, but in the lining of the renal pelvis (where the urine goes before it enters the ureter). This lining is made up of cells called transitional cells that look like the cells that line the ureters and bladder. Cancers that develop from these cells look like other urothelial carcinomas, such as bladder cancer. Have the same signs and symptoms as people with renal cell cancer like as blood in the urine and, sometimes, back pain.
Wilms tumor (nephroblastoma)
Wilms’ tumour and clear cell sarcoma of the kidney are types of kidney cancer which develop only in children. This type of cancer is very rare among adults.
Renal sarcomas are a rare type of kidney cancer that begin in the blood vessels or connective tissue of the kidney. They make up less than 1% of all kidney cancers.