Kidney cancer is cancer that begins in the kidneys. Your kidneys are two bean-shaped organs, each about the size of your fist. Our kidneys’ main job is to filter our blood. Sometimes we develop masses (growths or tumors) inside our kidneys. Some of these growths are cancerous but many are not. They’re located behind your abdominal organs, with one kidney on each side of your spine.
In adults, renal cell carcinoma is the most common type of kidney cancer. Due to advances in imaging technology, kidney cancer is often discovered at an early stage, when the cancer is small and confined to the kidney.
At Southwest Urology, we offer a variety of tests and procedures to further understand your unique situation and the extent of the disease:
- Physical exam and history
- Basic or complete metabolic panel (BMP or CMP) to check organ function
- Complete blood count (CBC) to check the blood for signs of disease
- Urinalysis to check for infection, blood, and protein in urine
- Serum creatinine levels or other kidney function tests to check if the kidneys are getting rid of waste
- Ultrasound to get images of your kidneys
- CT Scan and/or MRI to help diagnose and stage kidney masses
- Bone scan and chest x-ray to find out if the cancer has spread
- Kidney mass biopsy to help find out what type of tumor you have