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Kidney Cancer Prevention and Screening

Kidney Cancer Screening

Cancer screening exams are important medical tests done when you’re at risk but don’t have symptoms. They help find cancer at its earliest stage, when the chances for successful treatment are best.

Unfortunately, no standardized screening tests have been shown to improve kidney cancer outcomes. However, here at MD Anderson, we’re working to develop screening tests for those at risk.

Kidney Cancer Risk Factors

Anything that increases your chance of getting kidney cancer is called a risk factor. The biggest risk for kidney cancer is smoking. Read more about MD Anderson's smoking cessation clinical trials.

Other kidney cancer risk factors include:

  • Age: Most cases occur after age 50
  • Gender: Men are more than twice as likely to get kidney cancer as women
  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Exposure to asbestos, cadmium, and coke (used in making steel), benzene, herbicides and organic solvents
  • Advanced kidney disease and long-term kidney dialysis
  • Race: African-Americans have a slightly higher rate of kidney cancer
  • Rare inherited conditions including von Hippel-Lindau disease or hereditary papillary renal cell carcinoma
  • Family history of kidney disease

Not everyone with risk factors gets kidney cancer. However, if you have risk factors, it’s a good idea to discuss them with your doctor.

And at MD Anderson you’re surrounded by the strength of one of the nation’s largest and most experienced comprehensive cancer centers, which has all the support and wellness services needed to treat the whole person – not just the disease.

If you have been diagnosed with kidney cancer, we’re here to help. Call 1-877-632-6789 to make an appointment or request an appointment online.

Why Choose MD Anderson?

  • New generation targeted therapies for kidney cancer
  • Experience with kidney-sparing surgery
  • Laparoscopic and robotic surgery, cryoablation and radiofrequency ablation
  • One of most active kidney cancer programs in the United States
  • Variety of clinical trials of new agents for kidney cancer
  • Teams of experts provide customized kidney cancer treatment

Kidney Cancer Knowledge Center

Treatment at MD Anderson

Kidney cancer is treated in our: 

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Kidney Cancer Prevention

The most important thing you can do to prevent kidney cancer is to not smoke. If you work around hazardous chemicals, be sure to practice safety procedures.

Research shows that many cancers can be prevented. Visit the Prevention section of our website to find out steps you can take to avoid cancer.


© 2014 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center