Treatment and Trial Options for Kidney Cancer

Your doctors will help you make the plan that is best for you based on a good evaluation of your cancer, your general health and your preferences. Your plan may include surgery, drug therapy or trials.

Making your personalized care plan

Understanding more about the treatment options, both the surgical and drug treatment options that may be discussed, will help you during your initial appointments.

VISIT THE TRANSCRIPTS PAGE FOR PRINTED NOTES FROM THE VIDEO

Surgery as a treatment option

For some patients the only treatment they need is surgery. For others, surgery is not suggested for the treatment plan. Your labs, imaging blood tests and other information will guide the discussion about whether surgery is part of your treatment plan.

This short video for kidney cancer is a must watch before your consultations with the urologist and urologic surgeon.

Active Surveillance: Is it safe to watch small renal masses?

“Active Surveillance” is sometimes mentioned as an option especially for a small mass.

Two informative videos are provided below for patients considering “Active Surveillance”.

Surgery:
Can you explain nephrectomy?

Dr. Eric Kauffman, MD, discusses the difference between partial and radical nephrectomy of kidney cancer.

What are histology and grade and stage of my kidney cancer? Why are they important?

The report on your biospy or nephrectomy contains important information on the type and stage of your cancer.

Types of Kidney Cancer

The report on your biopsy or nephrectomy contains important information on the type and stage of your cancer. Click to view and download this useful handout from IKCC which gives you the basics on how your testing may guide your care plan.

Learn about Treatment Recommendations

The stage of your disease is important in deciding your treatment plan and comes from a combination of factors. View this video to help you learn the language and better understand what treatment recommendations are being made for you and why.

Understanding your pathology report

Understanding your pathology report: for clear cell, chromophobe and papillary subtypes.

Drug therapies for Kidney Cancer

There are many targeted therapies and multiple immunotherapies. Your doctor will review your tests, staging and history and discuss the treatment options that make are appropriate for you.

A list of approved drugs and links to more information, including financial support information are given below.

ADJUVANT THERAPY

Often given when the patient may be at high risk for a disease recurrence, even after the tumor and/or affected kidney have been surgically removed.

Options for Advanced Kidney Cancer

When kidney cancer has spread to other organs, the cancer is usually not completely curable. The goal of treatment is therefore to make life as long and as normal as possible. Combinations of different treatments may be recommended.

Options for line treatments for advanced kidney cancer

What are my choices and how do we select a therapy? Most patients start with a combination of two immunotherapies (IO/IO) or a TKI (a targeted cancer therapy) combined with an immunotherapy.

Immunotherapy and Immune Checkpoint Inibitors (ICI’s)

An important part of the immune system is its ability to keep itself from attacking normal cells in the body. To do this, it uses “checkpoints,” which are proteins on immune cells that need to be turned on (or off) to start an immune response. Kidney cancer cells sometimes use these checkpoints to avoid being attacked by the immune system. But these drugs target the checkpoint proteins, helping to restore the immune response against the cancer cells.

Targeted Therapy Drugs

Targeted therapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses drugs or other substances to precisely identify and attack certain types of cancer cells. A targeted therapy can be used by itself or in combination with other treatments.

Learn about Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies that involve people. Any time you or a loved one need treatment for cancer, clinical trials are an option to think about. Learning all you can about clinical trials can help you talk with your doctor and decide what is right for you.

Understanding Your Kidney Cancer Diagnosis

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Building a Care Team

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Treatment & Trial Options

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Living Well with Kidney Cancer

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Connect with Our Communities

There are multiple support groups serving the kidney cancer community.  SmartPatients.com is a patient forum and a KidneyCAN partner. We recommend this as a private, moderated  place to talk with other patients.  Your cancer center may also have their own support groups.

Reliable  Resources for Cancer Information
NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE
www.cancer.gov
CANCER.NET
www.cancer.net/cancer-types/kidney-cancer
INTERNATIONAL KIDNEY CANCER COALITION
www.ikcc.org
CANCER AND CAREERS
www.cancerandcareers.org/en/at-work

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Brandon Manley, M.D., is a urologic oncologist who specializes in genitourinary oncology, with a focus on patients with kidney cancer. He currently practices at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, where he lives with his wife Aimee, and his two daughters Sadie and Brooklyn. The family enjoys...

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Dr. Brandon Manley: Physician, Scientist, Advocate

Dr. Brandon Manley: Physician, Scientist, Advocate

Brandon Manley, M.D., is a urologic oncologist who specializes in genitourinary oncology, with a focus on patients with kidney cancer. He currently practices at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, where he lives with his wife Aimee, and his two daughters Sadie and Brooklyn. The family enjoys...

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Dr. Brandon Manley: Physician, Scientist, Advocate

Dr. Brandon Manley: Physician, Scientist, Advocate

Brandon Manley, M.D., is a urologic oncologist who specializes in genitourinary oncology, with a focus on patients with kidney cancer. He currently practices at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, where he lives with his wife Aimee, and his two daughters Sadie and Brooklyn. The family enjoys...

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Remembering Ralph: Time Well Spent

Remembering Ralph: Time Well Spent

Ralph Knapp was diagnosed in 2014 with stage IV kidney cancer and used the opportunity to increase research funding and bring hope to patients everywhere. With heavy hearts and profound sadness, we announce the passing of Ralph Knapp, a founder of KidneyCAN and leader of our mission to accelerate...