The most common type of kidney cancer in adults is renal cell carcinoma primarily diagnosed between the ages of 50 and 70 years of age with no exact cause identified. Some factors can increase the risks of kidney cancer including: dialysis treatment for kidney failure, family history of renal cell carcinoma, high blood pressure, congenital abnormalities of the kidneys, polycystic kidney disease, and smoking.
Although most kidney cancers are found incidentally on radiologic imaging for other reasons, kidney cancers can include some symptoms such as abdominal pain, flank pain, blood in the urine, weight loss, and constipation.
Radiologic imaging can easily diagnose most kidney tumors. Renal ultrasound or abdominal CT scan is traditionally performed to evaluate the kidney as well as MRI and multiple other radiologic imaging techniques.
Treatment for kidney cancer typically includes removal of the kidney which was performed in the past using open surgical techniques. Currently, laparoscopic or da Vinci robotic-assisted techniques are commonly used to remove either the entire kidney or a portion of the kidney.
Most chemotherapy agents will not cure the cancer although they may decrease the rate of its growth if the tumor has spread.