Treating Kidney Cancer – What to Expect
Your urologist will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that will provide targeted, advanced therapy to ensure the best possible outcome. At Arizona Urology Specialists, our physicians have extensive experience in some of the most advanced treatments for kidney cancer including minimally invasive surgery, which provides you with a quicker recovery, less pain, and fewer surgical complications.
The standard treatment for renal cell carcinoma is surgery, which is performed in the hospital. The following procedures can be performed through various approaches including laparoscopically or robotically, where several small incisions replace one larger one to promote less pain and faster recovery:
- Nephrectomy – Removal of the whole kidney
- Partial nephrectomy – Removal of only the cancerous part of the kidney. Studies have shown that this approach can be just as effective as a radical nephrectomy for many patients with early-stage disease.
Alternatives for Localized Disease
- Active surveillance – Deferring treatment and actively monitoring the tumor with CT scan or Ultrasound
- Arterial embolization – A gel or other material is injected into the arteries to stop blood flow to the tumor
- Immunotherapy, vaccine therapy, targeted therapy (in clinical trials)
Kidney cancer is not as responsive to chemotherapy and radiation therapy as other cancers are. Thus radiation therapy and chemotherapy are not used as primary treatments for kidney cancer.