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Urology

Q
If I have 1 kidney removed, can I live normally?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
After a kidney is removed, the remaining kidney takes over the work of both. Most people with only 1 kidney have no long-term health problems. However, you should avoid anything that could harm the remaining kidney. It is very important to talk with your health care provider if you start taking new medicines or if […] Read More

After a kidney is removed, the remaining kidney takes over the work of both. Most people with only 1 kidney have no long-term health problems. However, you should avoid anything that could harm the remaining kidney. It is very important to talk with your health care provider if you start taking new medicines or if you have a bladder infection or other issues that could affect your kidney. If the remaining kidney is damaged, you may need dialysis. With dialysis, a special machine does the kidneys' job of filtering the blood.

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Q
How is kidney cancer treated?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
Surgery. This is done to remove the tumor from the kidney. The whole kidney may be taken out, or only the part of the kidney with the tumor may be removed. Surgery is the standard treatment for cancer that is confined to the kidney and has not spread to other organs. Targeted therapy. These medicines […] Read More
  • Surgery. This is done to remove the tumor from the kidney. The whole kidney may be taken out, or only the part of the kidney with the tumor may be removed. Surgery is the standard treatment for cancer that is confined to the kidney and has not spread to other organs.
  • Targeted therapy. These medicines attack specific areas in the cancer cells or target the tumor's blood supply. This is the most common treatment for more advanced kidney cancers.
  • Biological therapy. This is used to treat the cancer and reduce the chance that the cancer will spread to other parts of the body. The treatment uses medicines that may help stimulate the body's immune system to fight cancer cells.
  • Radiation therapy. This is used to kill cancer cells using high-energy X-rays.
  • Chemotherapy. This is used to kill the cancer cells in the kidney and those that have spread to other organs.
  • Ablation therapy. There are 2 main types of ablation therapy used to treat kidney cancer. They’re both done by putting a needle into an area of cancer cells. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) uses energy waves to kill cancer cells. Cryoablation uses freezing to kill cancer cells.

Health care providers are always finding new ways to treat kidney cancer. New treatments are tested in clinical trials. Before beginning treatment, it's a good idea to ask your health care provider if there are any clinical trials that may be helpful to you.

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Q
How is kidney cancer diagnosed?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
There are various ways to find out if a person has kidney cancer. They include: Medical history and physical exam. The health care provider asks about the person’s medical history. He or she also asks about the person’s family history of kidney cancer and other conditions that may be related to kidney cancer. The health […] Read More

There are various ways to find out if a person has kidney cancer. They include:

  • Medical history and physical exam. The health care provider asks about the person's medical history. He or she also asks about the person's family history of kidney cancer and other conditions that may be related to kidney cancer. The health care provider will also do an exam.
  • Urine test. For this test, a small amount of urine is collected in a container. It is then tested for blood, protein, bacteria, and cancer cells. 
  • Blood tests. There is no blood test that can diagnose kidney cancer. But a complete blood count (CBC) and blood chemistry test can show signs in the blood that are linked with kidney cancer.
  • Imaging tests. These are tests used to take pictures of the inside of a person's body. They include CT scan, ultrasound, Intravenous pyelogram (IVP), angiography, and other tests.
  • Biopsy. During a biopsy, the health care provider removes a small piece of the tumor. A pathologist then looks at this sample under a microscope. For kidney cancer, the type of biopsy used is called fine needle aspiration (FNA). In most cases, if a CT scan or an MRI shows possible kidney cancer, surgery is most often done to remove the tumor or the entire kidney. The pathologist then looks at the tissue taken during surgery to confirm the diagnosis.
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Q
What are the symptoms of kidney cancer?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
In the early stages, kidney cancer frequently causes no symptoms. As cancer grows, symptoms may develop. The most common symptoms in people with kidney cancer include: Blood in the urine; Side or back pain; A mass or lump in the side or lower back; Ongoing tiredness; Appetite loss; Fast weight loss that happens without any […] Read More

In the early stages, kidney cancer frequently causes no symptoms. As cancer grows, symptoms may develop. The most common symptoms in people with kidney cancer include:

  • Blood in the urine;
  • Side or back pain;
  • A mass or lump in the side or lower back;
  • Ongoing tiredness;
  • Appetite loss;
  • Fast weight loss that happens without any effort to lose weight;
  • Fever with no known cause;
  • Leg or ankle swelling;
  • High blood pressure.

People with kidney cancer may have any combination of these symptoms.

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Q
Who gets kidney cancer?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
More than 60,000 people in the United States are told they have kidney cancer each year. Men get kidney cancer more often than women. People who smoke are more likely to get kidney cancer than nonsmokers. Here are some other risk factors: Having Von Hippel-Lindau disease; Family history of kidney cancer; Obesity; Regular contact with […] Read More

More than 60,000 people in the United States are told they have kidney cancer each year. Men get kidney cancer more often than women. People who smoke are more likely to get kidney cancer than nonsmokers. Here are some other risk factors:

  • Having Von Hippel-Lindau disease;
  • Family history of kidney cancer;
  • Obesity;
  • Regular contact with chemicals, such as cadmium, benzene, or asbestos.

However, many people with kidney cancer have no known risk factors.

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Q
Are there different types of renal cell carcinoma (RCC)?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
Yes, there are many types of RCC. A pathologist can name them under a microscope based on how they look. Here are some of the types: Clear cell, the most common type of RCC; Papillary, the second most common type; Chromophobe; Collecting duct, which is very rare. Read More

Yes, there are many types of RCC. A pathologist can name them under a microscope based on how they look. Here are some of the types:

  • Clear cell, the most common type of RCC;
  • Papillary, the second most common type;
  • Chromophobe;
  • Collecting duct, which is very rare.
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Q
What is kidney cancer?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
This is cancer that starts in the kidney. The most common type of kidney cancer is called renal cell carcinoma (RCC). The term renal is from the Latin word for kidney. About 90% of all kidney cancers are RCC. The other 10% are transitional cell carcinomas, Wilms tumors (in children), and other rare tumors. Read More

This is cancer that starts in the kidney. The most common type of kidney cancer is called renal cell carcinoma (RCC). The term renal is from the Latin word for kidney. About 90% of all kidney cancers are RCC. The other 10% are transitional cell carcinomas, Wilms tumors (in children), and other rare tumors.

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Q
What are the kidneys, and what do they do?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
The kidneys are 2 bean-shaped organs. Each is about the size of a fist. You have 1 on either side of your spine in the middle-to-lower back. They have 2 main roles: Filter waste from the blood and make urine; Make the hormone erythropoietin that controls the production of red blood cells in the bone […] Read More

The kidneys are 2 bean-shaped organs. Each is about the size of a fist. You have 1 on either side of your spine in the middle-to-lower back. They have 2 main roles:

  • Filter waste from the blood and make urine;
  • Make the hormone erythropoietin that controls the production of red blood cells in the bone marrow;
  • Help regulate blood pressure.

Most people are born with 2 kidneys, but you can survive with only 1. You can also survive with no kidneys. People with no kidneys or kidneys that don’t work survive with the help of dialysis. Dialysis uses a special machine to filter the blood.

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Q
What does normal semen look like, and when should I worry?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
Normal semen is thick and white, but it can have different consistencies. Blood in the semen, if it’s persistent, is a condition called hematospermia, and may relate to a prostate problem. If you have a foul-smelling ejaculate with pain, have your doctor check for infection. Read More

Normal semen is thick and white, but it can have different consistencies.

Blood in the semen, if it’s persistent, is a condition called hematospermia, and may relate to a prostate problem.

If you have a foul-smelling ejaculate with pain, have your doctor check for infection.

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Q
Can a man break his penis?
A
AGE2B consultant
0
Yes. There is no bone in the penis, but it has a very strong layer around it called the tunica albuginea that allows for rigidity during an erection. A penile fracture occurs when that fibrous connective tissue “breaks” during intercourse. When the erectile bodies fill with blood at high pressure, this strong layer keeps the […] Read More

Yes. There is no bone in the penis, but it has a very strong layer around it called the tunica albuginea that allows for rigidity during an erection.

A penile fracture occurs when that fibrous connective tissue “breaks” during intercourse. When the erectile bodies fill with blood at high pressure, this strong layer keeps the blood inside and allows for an erection. When it breaks, that layer tears, and you bleed through it.

There’s usually a very loud, painful snap followed by detumescence (the erection subsides). The result is bruising and swelling, and it is a surgical emergency.

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