Posted on March 8th, 2009 by
Among patients under the age of 65 with small, localized renal tumors, radical nephrectomy may result in worse overall survival than partial nephrectomy. These results were published in The Journal of Urology.
The kidneys are each filled with tiny tubules that clean and filter the blood-the process that removes waste and makes urine. Renal cell cancer (RCC) is a malignancy involving these tubules of the kidney.
Treatment of patients with renal cell cancer generally includes surgery unless patients are too ill to tolerate the procedure. Two common types of surgery are radical nephrectomy and partial nephrectomy.
A radical nephrectomy refers to the complete removal of the involved kidney, adjacent fat, adrenal gland, and/or any involved lymph nodes or major vasculature. A partial nephrectomy refers to the removal of the tumor and some surrounding normal tissue.
To describe outcomes after each type of surgery, researchers conducted a study among 648 patients with single, small (4 cm or less), localized renal cell tumors. A majority of the patients had renal cell cancer, but 122 of the patients had benign (noncancerous) growths. Two hundred and ninety patients underwent a radical nephrectomy and 358 underwent a partial nephrectomy.
The researchers conclude that compared with partial nephrectomy, radical nephrectomy may result in worse survival among younger patients with single, small renal cell tumors. They note “…these data provide further support for [partial nephrectomy] as the standard of care for managing most small renal masses.”
Reference: Thompson RH, Boorjian SA, Lohse CM et al. Radical nephrectomy for pT1a renal masses may be associated with decreased overall survival compared with partial nephrectomy. The Journal of Urology. 2008;179:468-473.
Related News: Radical Nephrectomy Increases Risk of Chronic Kidney Disease (9/6/2006)
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