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What about tumor necrosis

Limelife50's picture
Posts: 476
Joined: Nov 2011

Ok here I go again,sometimes I think I am a little obsessed with researching my cancer but then again I always seem to come up with something new that while I think can be helpful in my pursuit of many years of NED.My question has to do with a condition found in 30 percent of all RCC tumors refered to as Tumor Necrosis,from what I understand if this condition is found it is not a good thing,now keep in mind no I don't want to ruin anybodies day but if we have it I think we need to know,so with that said,from the info I have gotten so far people with tumor necrosis have a 5 fold chance of dieing verses people with out it.My pathology report does not specify if I have it or not.I went ahead and contacted my doctor today and I am going to try to establish if I have this condition or not.Any thoughts on this subject would be appreciated.Have a nice day!!!!

MikeK703's picture
Posts: 235
Joined: Sep 2010

Here's what I found a while back when seeking info about tumor necrosis.

I don't remember where the first quote came from, but the second is from the Mayo Clinic:

1) "Necrosis in the tumor means that the cancer cells in that area are dead. The pathologic finding of necrosis suggests a fast-growing cancer. This often happens because the tumor runs out of blood supply in the central portion. Without a blood supply, the tumor cells cannot live. When a tumor is necrotic, it may be difficult or impossible to diagnose on a small biopsy, and an additional sample might need to be taken. Tumor necrosis is often focal (limited to a small area) in the region. There are usually living cancer cells nearby that can be diagnosed as cancer using a microscope."

2) "Prognostic markers for renal cell carcinoma (RCC), such as patient symptoms, tumor stage, tumor size and tumor grade, are useful for determining appropriate follow-up and selecting patients for adjuvant therapy. Histologic coagulative tumor necrosis, also reported to be a prognostic marker for RCC, has not been extensively described or investigated. Research is necessary to characterize tumor necrosis as a prognostic feature of RCC."

If it indicates a "fast-growing cancer," as quote 1) says, this means to me that it is more worrisome before surgery. The other markers, like tumor stage and grade, seem to be more important after the surgery. Quote 2) tells us that the presence of tumor necrosis is not recognized as a trustworthy prognostic marker by everyone in the medical community.

I asked my urologist about it because it came back as "present" in my pathology report. He said simply that it meant some of the cancer cells were dead and it wasn't something I should worry about. He certainly doesn't seemed worried about it so I guess I'll follow his lead.


Limelife50's picture
Posts: 476
Joined: Nov 2011

Thank you for the explanation Mike I now have a clearer understanding as to how this symptom develops.

garym's picture
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

Mine was necrotic in the center which my urologist said was a good thing because "The only good cancer cells are dead cancer cells." and that the rest of my pathology was so good there was nothing to worry about.

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