Why choose us for kidney cancer care?
At Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, our doctors are at the forefront of kidney cancer care. Our surgeons are experts at treating the most advanced kidney cancers, including technical procedures like surgery for tumor thrombus (extension of kidney cancer into the major veins) — always with a focus on you.
Our skilled doctors use leading techniques to treat a high volume of kidney cancers. South Texas has a very high incidence rate of kidney cancer as compared to the national average. Our team has developed advanced surgical protocols to provide exceptional cancer care close to your support network and the comforts of home.
What you need to know about kidney cancer
- The kidneys are bean-shaped organs that sit in your abdomen, near your back. Their primary role is filtering waste products (like extra water or toxic substances) out of your blood.
- Kidney cancer is a kind of genitourinary (GU) cancer. Find out more about our nationally renowned genitourinary cancer program.
- South Texas has higher rates of kidney cancer than most areas of the country. Our team of doctors and scientists work diligently to understand why, so we can offer you a higher level of care.
- If you ever see blood in your urine, call your doctor. It may be due to a common, easily treatable health problem. But blood in the urine can also be a sign of kidney cancer. The earlier we detect kidney cancer, the better we can treat it.
- Our surgeons regularly perform complicated procedures to successfully remove kidney cancer that has spread to one of the body’s biggest blood vessels (called the inferior vena cava), also called tumor thrombus. This surgery is very technically complex and requires cancer surgeons to work closely with vascular and cardiac surgeons to remove cancer while protecting your other organs.
How to talk to your doctor about kidney cancer
Seeing blood in your urine makes many people worry. You should know that this symptom is often due to routine, easily treatable problems.
Sometimes, however, it can be the first sign of kidney cancer. Telling your doctor is the only way to find out for sure. We’re here to help you get answers and feel better.
A cancer diagnosis can be a lot to take in. We want you to ask questions and bring up concerns at any time.
You might want to ask your doctor about:
- Additional testing you may need to determine the kidney cancer type or find out if your genes play a role in your cancer risk
- Cancer stage, including a tumor’s size and location, whether cancer has spread and what it means for your long-term health
- Treatment options, including immunotherapy or other clinical trials you may be eligible for
- Potential treatment side effects and therapies to lessen their impact on your daily life
- Support to help you cope with the ways kidney cancer can affect your mind, body and spirit
Sometimes, bringing a close family member or loved one with you to appointments can help you remember questions or important treatment details. We’ll get through this together.
Our doctors specialize in treating all forms of early and advanced kidney cancer, including:
- Renal cell carcinoma: The most common type of kidney cancer, it may develop into one or multiple tumors inside the kidney.
- Urothelial carcinoma: Also called transitional cell carcinoma, urothelial carcinoma is less common. This cancer doesn’t actually develop inside the kidney. It grows from cells located where the ureters (tubes that connect your kidney to your bladder) meet the kidneys.
- Wilms tumor: This type of kidney cancer that usually affects young children under the age of 3. Our team includes pediatric oncologists. These well-known experts tailor care to the unique needs of children. Learn more about Wilms tumor.