Kidney cancer can form in different areas of the kidney. Kidney cancer includes renal cell carcinoma (cancer that forms in the lining of very small tubes in the kidney that filter the blood and remove waste products) and renal pelvis carcinoma (cancer that forms in the center of the kidney where urine collects). It also includes Wilms tumor, which is a type of kidney cancer that usually develops in children.
Common symptoms of kidney cancer include:
- Blood in the urine (which may make urine look rusty or darker red)
- Pain in the side that doesn’t go away
- A lump or mass in the side or abdomen
- Weight loss for no known reason
- Feeling very tired
These symptoms may be caused by kidney cancer or by other health problems, such as an infection or a kidney cyst. People with these symptoms should tell their doctor so that any problem can be diagnosed and treated as early as possible.
The urological surgeon will surgically remove the cancerous kidney (radical nephrectomy). In some cases, the entire kidney does not have to be removed. Instead, the urological surgeon will remove only a portion of the kidney (partial nephrectomy).
Nephrectomies can be performed with open surgery, meaning the surgeon makes an incision and opens the surgical site allowing the surgeon to see the area. Clinical Urology Associates perform this surgery utilizing the da Vinci Surgical System. (See Robotic Surgery for more information.)