Kidney cancer is a malignancy that develops in the kidneys, a pair of bean-shaped organs situated above the waist on either side of the spine. The kidneys' primary function is to filter out excess water and salt from the blood, converting those wastes into urine sent out of the body while urinating.
Kidney cancer occurs when cells in one or both kidneys have abnormal DNA mutations that allow the cells to proliferate and divide uncontrollably. The excess cells subsequently gather to produce malignant tumors. A cancerous tumor can spread to other tissues and organs.
Surgery is the only kidney cancer treatment that is done for curing the cancer. According to Dr. Sandeep Nayak, one of the best oncologists in India, the diseased kidney can be saved by removing just the tumor in many cases using minimally invasive procedures like robotic partial nephrectomy.
Dr. Sandeep Nayak is among the few surgical oncologists in India having expertise in minimally invasive cancer surgeries involving laparoscopic and robotic techniques. He strives to save the afflicted organ(s) with cutting-edge surgical procedures and ensures the patient recovers quickly with minimal post-operative pain.
This article outlines the symptoms, causes, diagnosis, and treatment of kidney cancer in India. Scroll down to learn more.
Now, let’s discuss the Signs and Symptoms of Kidney Cancer
Most people do not have any signs or symptoms in the initial stages. Kidney cancer is often detected during an abdominal imaging test for another reason.
As the tumor grows, you may experience the following:
- Urine with blood in it
- Lower back discomfort
- A lump in the lower back or along the side of the waist
- Sudden weight loss
- Night sweats
Causes of Kidney Cancer
The exact cause of kidney cancer is unknown. However, the following factors can raise your likelihood of getting it:
Smoking – the more you smoke, the more likely you are to have high blood pressure (hypertension), increasing your risk for developing kidney cancer.
Obesity - a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher.
Some inherited genetic disorders like vHL syndrome which runs in families.
Long-term dialysis for chronic kidney disease.
Maintaining a healthy weight, keeping healthy blood pressure, and avoiding smoking are the best ways to reduce your chances of developing kidney cancer.
Let’s talk about the Diagnosis of Kidney Cancer
The doctor will record your thorough medical history and conduct a physical exam if you have symptoms. The doctor may also order specific tests to diagnose and evaluate cancer. These tests may include the following:
Urine examinations: A urine sample is examined to determine whether or not it contains blood. Even minute traces of blood, invisible to the naked eye, can be detected in urine tests.
Blood tests: These are used to count the number of different types of blood cells and to examine the electrolytes in your body. A blood test can determine if you have anemia (low red blood cell count) or if your kidney function is impaired (by looking at the creatinine level).
CT scan: According to Dr. Sandeep Nayak, kidney cancer is often diagnosed on a CT scan, and no other imaging or diagnostic tests like biopsy are required. CT scan can differentiate between various types of tumors and cysts of kidney which provides accurate diagnosis.
PET scan: Though PET CT is very often performed, it is not needed in most of the cases as it has not proven its value in the staging of kidney cancer. However, it has value in checking if it has spread to lung and bone. In some selected cases it may be used.
Kidney Cancer Treatment
Kidney cancer treatment in Bangalore, India, often depends on various factors, including cancer type and stage, potential side effects, and the patient's requirements and physical well-being.
The most common kidney cancer treatment in India is surgery and targeted therapy. Rarely radiation therapy, immunotherapy, or a combination of these may be used.
People with advanced kidney cancer, also known as metastatic cancer, are usually treated with multiple lines of therapy. This means that the treatments are given one after the other.
Kidney Cancer Surgery
Dr. Sandeep Nayak is one of the few surgical oncologists in India who is equally skilled in conventional and minimally invasive cancer surgeries (laparoscopic and robotic techniques).
During surgery, the doctor removes the tumor and some surrounding healthy tissue. If cancer has not spread beyond the kidneys, surgery to remove the tumor may be all that is required.
Surgery to remove the tumor may necessitate the removal of a portion or all of the kidney (radical nephrectomy) and nearby tissue and lymph nodes.
The following procedures can be performed to treat kidney cancer:
It involves surgical removal of the tumour alone, and the kidney can be saved. This surgery preserves kidney function and reduces the risk of chronic kidney disease after surgery. Dr Sandeep Nayak studies the CT scan of the patient in detail before deciding if it is possible to save the kidney. When it possible to save kidney, it is always better to save it. Partial nephrectomies are best performed by robotic surgery.
Minimally Invasive Surgery (laparoscopic and robotic techniques):
During laparoscopic surgery, the surgeon makes several minor incisions in the abdomen rather than the single larger cut used in traditional surgery.
Then, the surgeon inserts a laparoscope through these small incisions to remove the tumour or kidney entirely or partially.
At times, the surgeon may use the robotic technique to perform surgery. This procedure may be more time-consuming, but it may be less painful.
It entails removing the entire kidney and a border of normal tissue and other neighbouring tissues such as lymph nodes, the adrenal gland, or other structures.
A nephrectomy can be executed using two different techniques.
Open nephrectomy: It involves a single incision in the abdomen or side.
Laparoscopic or robotic nephrectomy: It is performed by creating several small incisions in the abdominal region.
Specialized training is required for laparoscopic and robotic procedures. It is critical to discuss the potential risks and benefits of these types of procedures with your surgical team and ensure that the team has prior experience with the procedure.
Dr. Sandeep Nayak is highly experienced and skilled in laparoscopic and robotic cancer surgeries. So, you can consult him for kidney cancer treatment in Bangalore, India.
What is Kidney Cancer Treatment Cost in India?
The cost of kidney cancer treatment in India is significantly lower than that of any other developing nation in the industrialized world.
The cost of renal cancer treatment in India is approximately to be at least 60 to 70 percent less than in western countries like the US and the UK.
The approximate cost of treating kidney cancer in India is between $3,000 to $4,000 (245765– 3,28,860 INR). However, the cost of kidney cancer treatment in India is impacted by factors like the location of the hospital, the doctor's experience, the lodging and accommodation, and post-surgery care.
Now, let’s discuss,
Who is at Risk for Kidney Cancer?
Researchers have discovered several risk factors that increase anyone's chance of developing kidney cancer.
The risk factors include:
Smoking. Kidney cancer is more than twice as likely to occur when you smoke. About 25% of kidney malignancies in women and 30% in males are thought to be brought on by it.
Gender. Kidney cancer is two to three times more common in men than women.
Age. Adults are typically affected by kidney cancer, which is frequently detected in 50 to 70 years.
Nutrition and body weight. Obesity and kidney cancer have been linked in numerous studies.
Hypertension. Kidney cancer may be more common in men with hypertension or high blood pressure.
Exposure to Cadmium. According to several studies, exposure to the metal cadmium is linked to kidney cancer. Another factor that could put someone more at risk is working with batteries, paints, or welding supplies. For smokers who have been exposed to cadmium, this risk is significantly more considerable.
Chronic renal condition. An increased risk of getting kidney cancer may exist in people whose renal function has declined but are not yet in need of dialysis.
Long-term dialysis. Long-term dialysis patients have the risk of developing malignant kidney cysts. Since they are frequently discovered early, these growths can often be removed before cancer progresses.
· Family history of renal cancer. A higher chance of developing kidney cancer may exist in people with a family history of the condition.
You will be better prepared to take precautions to protect yourself if you are aware of the many risk factors linked to kidney cancer.
While some people with several risk factors never get cancer, others with no known risk factors do.
Making more educated decisions about your lifestyle and healthcare may be aided by being aware of your risk factors and talking to your doctor about them.
What are the Preventions for Kidney Cancer?
Various factors bring on different types of cancer. Researchers are still trying to figure out what causes kidney cancer and how to prevent it.
Although there is no known way to prevent kidney cancer entirely, you may be able to reduce your risk by doing one or more of the following:
- quitting smoking
- maintaining blood pressure
- maintaining a healthy body weight
- eating a diet rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, and low-fat foods.