Kidney Cancer

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

Symptoms of Kidney Cancer Include:

  • Blood in urine
  • Flank pain between the ribs and hips
  • Low back pain on one side (not caused by injury) that does not go away
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss not caused by dieting
  • Fever that is not caused by an infection and does not go away
  • Tiredness
  • Low red blood cell count

Because these symptoms may overlap with those of other conditions, it is important to get the correct diagnosis to find the right treatment. To help determine the best option for you the American Cancer Society recommends proper screenings.

How do we treat kidney cancer?

The main goals in treating kidney masses are to cure you of the cancer and to protect kidney function where possible. Protecting kidney function is especially important for patients with only one kidney or some other kidney disease.
For some patients, surgery will never be needed. For others, surgery may be the best choice. At SouthWest Urology, our kidney cancer specialists strive to not only find the best possible treatment for our patients, but we customize our approach for each individual to ensure the best chance at preserving a high quality of life. Treatment options include:

  • Active surveillance
  • Ablation
  • Partial nephrectomy
  • Radical nephrectomy
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Immunotherapy
  • Targeted therapy

Why Choose Us?

  • Twelve highly trained, collaborative urological specialists all taking new patients
  • Four locations across the northern Ohio region
  • Consultation appointments scheduled within 5-7 days of referral
  • One-stop office for a wide range of urological conditions for both males and females
  • In-office lab testing and imaging
  • In-office medication dispensary
  • Comprehensive cancer care including kidney, ureter, bladder, prostate, and testicular cancers
  • Clinical navigation for BPH, Overactive Bladder and Prostate Cancer
  • Clinical Trials
  • We accept most insurance plans including Medicare, Medicaid, and VA