Kidney Cancer Patients Fare Better With Tumor Removal
TUESDAY, April 17 (HealthDay News) -- Kidney cancer patients who
have only the tumor removed, not the entire kidney, have higher
survival rates, a new study finds.
The research involved more than 7,000 Medicare patients with
early-stage kidney cancer who underwent surgery to remove either
the entire organ (radical nephrectomy) or only the tumor and a
small margin of healthy tissue around it (partial nephrectomy).
After an average follow-up of five years, 25 percent of patients
who had a partial nephrectomy had died, compared with 42 percent of
those who had a radical nephrectomy, researchers at the University
of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center reported.
The study appears in the April 18 issue of the
Journal of the American Medical Association.
"For patients who are candidates for partial nephrectomy, it should be the preferred treatment option. We found that patients who were younger or had preexisting medical conditions benefited most from partial nephrectomy," lead author Dr. Hung-Jui Tan, a urology resident at the U-M Medical School, said in a university news release.
Early-stage kidney cancers are becoming more common and are
often discovered by chance when patients receive an X-ray or CT
scan for an unrelated condition.
"As more and more people are identified with these small, early-stage cancers, there's more interest in understanding how best to treat these patients," senior study author Dr. David Miller, an assistant professor of urology at the U-M Medical School and member of U-M's Institute for Health Care Policy and Innovation, said in the news release.
"This study does not suggest every patient with early-stage kidney cancer should get a partial nephrectomy. It supports the notion that we need to expand the use of partial nephrectomy and make it a preferred treatment choice for patients with small tumors as much as possible, to optimize long-term survival," Miller noted.
The American Cancer Society estimates that 64,770 people in the
United States will be diagnosed with kidney cancer this year and
13,570 will die from the disease.
The U.S. National Cancer Institute has more about
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