Renal Cell Cancer


In its early stages, renal cell cancer usually causes no obvious signs or troublesome symptoms. However, as a kidney tumor grows, symptoms may occur. These possible renal cell carcinoma symptoms may include:

  • Blood in the urine. Blood may be present one day and not the next. In some cases, a person can actually see the blood, or traces of it may be found in urinalysis, a lab test often performed as part of a regular medical checkup.

  • A lump or mass in the renal cell area.

Other less common renal cell carcinoma symptoms may include:

  • Fatigue

  • Loss of appetite

  • Weight loss

  • Recurrent fevers

  • A pain in the side that doesn't go away

  • A general feeling of poor health

High blood pressure or a lower than normal number of red cells in the blood (anemia) may also signal a kidney tumor; however, these renal cell carcinoma symptoms occur less often.

These symptoms may be caused by cancer or by other, less serious problems such as an infection or a cyst. Only a doctor can make a renal cell carcinoma diagnosis. People with any of these symptoms may see their family doctor or a urologist, a doctor who specializes in diseases of the urinary system. Usually, early cancer does not cause pain; it is important not to wait to feel pain before seeing a doctor.

In most cases, the earlier renal cell cancer is diagnosed and treated, the better a person's chance for a full recovery.

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