39 with renal cancer?

TKDgal
TKDgal Member Posts: 12

A couple of months ago an ultrasound was done on my gallbladder and a 3.7 cm mass was found on my kidney. Last week I had a CT scan and was told it was a solid mass and most likely cancer. I've had past ultrasounds that were fine. I have seen two Urologists. One wants to schedule surgery and one wants to do a MRI followed by a biopsy. I feel so overwhelmed and drained. Any advice or words of encouragement for me? Right now I am trying to remember that this sucks but is manageable and I was lucky it was caught so early. 

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Comments

  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,360 Member
    edited August 2016 #2
    Welcome

    TKDgal,

    Welcome to the club which no one in their right mind would volunteer to join.

    From my observations biopsy's are controversal and usually not done if it looks like Cancer on a CT. But I am not a doctor.  Tumors rarely spred smaller than 3 or 4 CM. Mine was 4,2 cm when they yanked it out 14 years ago and so far so good. Others will chime in with their thoughts. I would say that the surgery is painless, but I would be laughed off this forum.

     

     

    Icemantoo

  • TKDgal
    TKDgal Member Posts: 12
    biopsy

    The doctor who wants to do the biopsy is older and more experienced with renal cancer. He says he always insists on doing a biopsy where he has removed a kidney that he didn't need to because the radiologist  said it was cancer and it looked like cancer. He doesn't believe doing a biopsy can spread cancer. My CT report said "solid mass should be assumed to be renal cell carcinoma until otherwise proven." 

  • Allochka
    Allochka Member Posts: 1,022 Member
    would it be really necessary

    would it be really necessary to remove the whole kidney in your case? Perhaps partial surgery would be enough, so  even if not cancer (hopefully) - kidney still in place?

    like other guys said, biopsy for kidney cancer is rather uncommon. If I were you, I'd say "cut it out"...

  • TKDgal
    TKDgal Member Posts: 12
    edited August 2016 #5
    Partial

    Both doctors agree that only part of my kidney should need to be removed. Where I am relatively young for RCC, they want to try to save as much as they safely can.

  • tiger09
    tiger09 Member Posts: 9
    edited August 2016 #6
    Hi there! If it is any

    Hi there! If it is any comfort, I am 29 with Stage IV RCC, so yes, it can and does happen to younger people like you and I.

    I am sorry to hear this. Trust me when I say I know how scary it is. I would definitely do a partial neph if possible to preserve part of your kidney. Mine was too advanced to do a partial. I would also recommend a teaching hospital if you are able for the surgery. I went the next state over for my surgery because the surgeons where I live were not as comfortable doing the surgery because they don't see cases like mine very often, and I live in a large city.

    Best of luck!!

  • foxhd
    foxhd Member Posts: 3,181 Member
    Kinda sounds

    like a common theme. The one where most doctors are unfamiliar with current RCC treatments. Biopsies aren't usually done as a scan is all that is needed. Biopsies can promote metastasies. Find more of a specialist in your area.

  • TKDgal
    TKDgal Member Posts: 12
    foxhd said:

    Kinda sounds

    like a common theme. The one where most doctors are unfamiliar with current RCC treatments. Biopsies aren't usually done as a scan is all that is needed. Biopsies can promote metastasies. Find more of a specialist in your area.

    The one who wants to do a

    The one who wants to do a biopsy on my kidney is suppose to be the expert in the area. He's the one that treated my regular doctor's RCC. :/

  • hardo718
    hardo718 Member Posts: 853 Member
    edited August 2016 #9
    Welcome TKDgal

    As others here have said, biopsy typically isn't the way to go.  Personally, when I heard the word cancer I just wanted it out....as soon as possible.

    You have the information to make the best decision for you.  I would also advise you to make sure your doctor is a urologic / oncologist.  The good news is your growth is relatively small.

    Keep us posted and best of luck.

    Donna~

  • foroughsh
    foroughsh Member Posts: 779 Member
    Kidney cancer usually doesn't

    Kidney cancer usually doesn't need to be biopsied, it can be diagnosed by C.T scan with/without contrast. Doing biopsy is also a little dangerous as it might cause the cancerous cells to find their way out of kidney capsule and results metastasis. It's good to see an uro-oncologist  who has done many kidney cancer surgeries.

    And yes, you are lucky. A 3.7 cm tumor is usually stage one which makes the survival rate more than 90℅ . That's a good cancer, isn't it?

    Forough

     

  • Allochka
    Allochka Member Posts: 1,022 Member
    edited August 2016 #11
    If both docs says partial is

    If both docs says partial is possible - then just do a partial without biopsy. Thus you'll prevent possible spread, preserve the kidney and get the tumor out, no matter what it is.Post-surgery  Pathology will answer the question about tumor's nature. Sounds like win-win situation for me.

    Just ask your doctor what benefit would biopsy bring him? He is not planning to remove your whole kidney, so why he has to know if tumor is benign or malugnant before cutting it out? The surgery will be the same anyway.

  • TKDgal
    TKDgal Member Posts: 12
    Allochka said:

    If both docs says partial is

    If both docs says partial is possible - then just do a partial without biopsy. Thus you'll prevent possible spread, preserve the kidney and get the tumor out, no matter what it is.Post-surgery  Pathology will answer the question about tumor's nature. Sounds like win-win situation for me.

    Just ask your doctor what benefit would biopsy bring him? He is not planning to remove your whole kidney, so why he has to know if tumor is benign or malugnant before cutting it out? The surgery will be the same anyway.

    He said where there is a

    He said where there is a small chance it's benign and it is so small and I'm younger, we could take a watch and see approach to the tumor and not do any surgery. He has one patient that has had a tumor for 10 years that hasn't grown. He doesn't want me to lose part of my kidney unless I have to. The other surgeon says benign tumors are taken out at the 4 cm mark and I'm close enough that it mine as well come out, 

  • icemantoo
    icemantoo Member Posts: 3,360 Member
    There is no right or wrong Answer

    TKDgal,

     

    At 3.7 cm I would go with the second guy, but that is just my opinion.

     

    Icemantoo

  • Bay Area Guy
    Bay Area Guy Member Posts: 581 Member
    Mine was 1.5cm when first

    Mine was 1.5cm when first discovered, and 1.8 when it was removed 2-1/2 years later.  I was advised against a biospy for the reasons given above.....not necessary and could lead to a possible spread of the disease.  I was fortunate enough to be referred to an excellent urological oncologist at Stanford University who helped explain what the best options were.  It's likely, that at the relatively small size your lesion is, that you would be able to have a partial nephrectomy.  If you can find a surgeon in your area that is an expert at robotic assisted laparoscopic partial nephrectomies, that would be the way to go.  But most important is that you find someone you're comfortable with and have confidence in.

    Best wishes.  I think you'll find that there are quite a few people on this forum that have a lot of good information.

  • Teashea
    Teashea Member Posts: 89 Member
    TKDgal said:

    He said where there is a

    He said where there is a small chance it's benign and it is so small and I'm younger, we could take a watch and see approach to the tumor and not do any surgery. He has one patient that has had a tumor for 10 years that hasn't grown. He doesn't want me to lose part of my kidney unless I have to. The other surgeon says benign tumors are taken out at the 4 cm mark and I'm close enough that it mine as well come out, 

    second opinion

    If you can get a second opinion. I wish you the best.

  • Kangaroorex
    Kangaroorex Member Posts: 47 Member
    Biopsy survivor

    I had a biopsy on one of my tumors because the results from the CT, PET, US and bloodwork all came back inconclusive and my presentation was considered just odd.  but anything short of that would have just lead to diagnosis and removal. I am sort of surprised that they dont take the wait and see approach and see if the mass grows over time before doing anything more.

    I would want to know more about what the doctor thinks a biopsy will do to improve your chances and your diagnosis.  there are a number of non-cancer related risks associate with a kidney biopsy that they usually dont mention until you are in preop (wait?!? you could deflate my lung?? and you didn't feel this was an important detail to mention? *from personal experience*)  

     

  • JoanneNH
    JoanneNH Member Posts: 115
    "I've had past ultrasounds

    "I've had past ultrasounds that were fine. "

    Really doesn't mean anything now.

    You could always have a second opinion on the CT scan.  I'd look into MD Anderson.  They can pretty much tell if it is cancer.

  • Allochka
    Allochka Member Posts: 1,022 Member
    Well, you could take a wait

    Well, you could take a wait and see approach without a biopsy then. Just wait for 6 months (tumor of that size most likely won't spread, even if malignant), and then check if it has grown. Somehow this biopsy thing would make me uncomfortable due to possible spread.

    my husband also has very tiny benign angiomiolipoma. So I've read about them and heard the same thing your second doc says - at 4 cm even benign vascular tumors have increased risk of rupture (and subsequent serious complications) and better be taken out. 

    It is up to you to decide, but I'd better get this thing out of me if we are talking partial or get one more opinion ...

  • iben
    iben Member Posts: 7
    foroughsh said:

    Kidney cancer usually doesn't

    Kidney cancer usually doesn't need to be biopsied, it can be diagnosed by C.T scan with/without contrast. Doing biopsy is also a little dangerous as it might cause the cancerous cells to find their way out of kidney capsule and results metastasis. It's good to see an uro-oncologist  who has done many kidney cancer surgeries.

    And yes, you are lucky. A 3.7 cm tumor is usually stage one which makes the survival rate more than 90℅ . That's a good cancer, isn't it?

    Forough

     

    About biopsi.

    Hi there.i Got an ultrasound and My kidney wasent normal.they took a biopsi.its was 4 cm tumor.stage 1.i dident know about the rusk maybe metasticing later.and now i dont understand Why they room this biopsi.i thought i was normal presidure fore every kidney cancer patient.?i dont understand why they tolk the biopsi

  • jason.2835
    jason.2835 Member Posts: 337 Member
    35

    I was 35 at DX with a 2.8 cm tumor.  It definitely happens.  It's not fun.  But at over 3 cm (mine was also reported at 3.8 cm on the MRI but it ended up being 2.8 in path report, so it can change) I would want it out.  Just my opinion.

    - jay

  • brea588
    brea588 Member Posts: 240
    hi

    For what its worth , I would find me another doctor period.  Neither of the both sound very good to me.  Get second opinions please!!!