Kidney cancer often found by accident

Mar 15, 2021 | Jennifer O'Hara | @jenohara | Comments (3)


Your kidneys remove waste from your blood and regulate a healthy balance between water, sodium and minerals in your bloodstream.

"Kidneys filter intoxicants, drugs and waste products out of your blood," says Dr. Scott Cheney, a Mayo Clinic urologic surgeon. "We would actually die within about a week without having good kidney function."

Poor kidney function could mean kidney cancer, but signs or symptoms are rare in its early stages. Patient are sometimes informed about kidney cancer tumors when they are discovered during CT scans or other imaging techniques for unrelated ailments.

In this Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Cheney discusses different types of kidney cancers, how smoking can affect the kidneys and why treatment usually involves surgery.

To practice safe social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, this interview was conducted using video conferencing. The sound and video quality are representative of the technology used. For the safety of its patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in an area not designated for patient care, where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.

Read the full transcript.

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Is it common to have a recurrence of kidney cancer after a nefrectomy?


Yes, kidney cancer can recur after a nephrectomy. The chances of recurrence vary depending on the stage of the tumor.

@marypokonosky, did you have a nephrectomy?


My husband had right kidney removed. Blood in urine 1st sign brought to Dr. Also bladder issue.

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