About renal cell carcinoma (RCC)
Renal Cell Carcinoma, or RCC, is the most common type of kidney cancer, accounting for up to 85% of malignant kidney tumors. RCC develops in the lining of the kidneys tubes and grows into a tumor. Symptoms can include blood in the urine, a lump and/or pain in the abdomen or side that does not go away and anemia. The approximate age of diagnosis with RCC is 60-65 and the disease is twice as common in men as it is in women.
Renal Cell Carcinoma accounts for 2% of all new cancers worldwide, with occurrence rates rising steadily around the world. If left untreated, RCC can become advanced or metastatic, meaning it has spread to neighboring lymph nodes and other organs. In fact, nearly 1 in 5 patients has advanced or metastatic RCC at the time of diagnosis.
Treating Advanced RCC
Treatment plans for patients with advanced RCC vary, but can often involve both surgery and medicine, and it is not uncommon for patients to be treated with more than one medicine or type of therapy.
Treatment approaches for patients with advanced RCC can include:
- Surgery: The removal of all or part of the kidney
- Chemotherapy: Strong drugs given to kill cancer cells, usually part of a treatment plan that also includes surgery and radiation therapy
- Immunotherapy: Treatment that uses certain parts of a person's own immune system to fight the cancer
- Targeted Therapy: Medication that interferes with different pathways that let the tumor grow
Some treatments for advanced RCC are given intravenously and some are oral therapies in the form of a tablet or pill that patients can take at home.