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Stages Of Kidney Cancer - How They Can Be Managed?

Dr. Mahendra Mulani 91% (190 ratings)
Mbbs, MD - General Medicine, DM - Nephrology
Nephrologist, Ahmedabad  •  8 years experience
Stages Of Kidney Cancer - How They Can Be Managed?

Kidney cancer or renal cancer is when kidney cells grow uncontrollably and form a tumour. Kidney cancer often begins in the tubules (tiny tubes in the kidneys). The prognosis may depend on the stage of the kidney cancer.

Different Stages of Kidney Cancer
The TNM system helps to categorize each stage of the kidney cancer.
Tumour (T) – Describes the size and location of the tumour.
Node (N) – Describes the spread of cancer to lymph nodes.
Metastatis (M) – Describes the spread of cancer to other body parts.

These results combined with the five stages (0 and 1 to 4) can help to identify the right treatment option for every patient. Zero stage describes no cancer presence. For instance –
Stage 1 – Here the tumour is confined to kidneys and its size is smaller than 7 centimetres. (T1 or T1, N0, M0)
Stage 2 – Here the tumour is confined to kidneys and its size is more than 7 centimetres. (T2)
Stage 3 – Here the tumour is in kidneys or blood vessels or fatty tissues but also a lymph node; cancer spreads to major veins but doesn’t extend beyond renal or Gerota’s fascia (connective tissues surrounding adrenal glands and kidneys). (T3)
Stage 4 – Here the cancer is in the fatty tissues surrounding kidneys and adjacent lymph nodes; has spread to other nearby organs and beyond renal fascia. (T4)

Treatment and management of kidney cancer
Once your doctor has determined the staging of your kidney cancer, a treatment plan can be formulated for you.

  1. Surgery
    • Simple nephrectomy removes the affected kidney.
    • Radical nephrectomy is a common surgery for kidney cancer. It removes all affected parts such as the kidneys, adrenal gland, lymph nodes and surrounding tissues.
    • Partial nephrectomy is for small tumours and removes the kidneys and the surrounding tissues.
  2. Interventional radiology: This is a surgery aided by real-time images. An advanced surgery using a nano knife is minimally-invasive and is effective for inoperable kidney tumours.
  3. Targeted therapy: Drugs target specific tumour cells and destroy them.
  4. Immunotherapy: Used for kidney cancer that has spread to other organs, this therapy may use different types of drugs to either help immune cells find cancer growth or regulate the immune system activity to stop or slow cancer growth.
  5. Arterial embolization: It is a procedure to stop blood supply to the kidney tumour, in order to shrink it in size prior to surgery.
  6. Cryotherapy: This procedure involves using extreme cold to kill cancer cells.

Chemotherapy is not very effective for treating kidney cancer. Talk to your doctor about all possible treatment options for your cancer. You can lower your risk of kidney cancer by eating healthy, maintaining your ideal body weight and managing your blood pressure.

 

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