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We also offer experienced care for those with or at risk for inherited or rare forms of kidney cancers including von Hippel-Lindau disease.
We offer patients the most advanced treatment options available for all stages of kidney cancer. Recent advances in available treatment include:
Our kidney cancer patients have access to both traditional and innovative approaches to the treatment of advanced kidney cancer. These include targeted therapies, which have revolutionized the care and prognosis of this disease. Our patients have access to new treatments through our clinical trials program, which is one of the most advanced in the region.
Minimally invasive surgeries reduce complications, shorten hospital stays, and speed patient recovery. Our patients benefits from experienced surgical teams who are experienced in traditional and minimally invasive procedures including radiofrequency ablation and laparoscopic nephrectomy.
Although radiation is not often required to treat cancer within the kidney, it may be used after surgery. In this case, we use the most current, safest techniques, including intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and intraoperative radiation. The latter is a form of radiation delivered to the surgical area once a tumor has been removed and while the patient is under sedation. Precision radiation, including proton beam therapy, may also be used if cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
Learn more about radiation therapy.
New patients are generally seen within a week of referral. At your first appointment, you will meet the genitourinary cancer specialists who will be involved in your care, including:
In addition, you may also see:
Matthew R. Smith, MD, PhDDirector, Genitourinary Malignancies Program
The kidneys are two large, bean-shaped organs located near the backbone. Cancer that starts in the tissues of a kidney is called kidney cancer.
The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimates that more than 61,500 new cases of kidney cancer would be diagnosed in the United States in 2015, and that the disease would cause about 14,000 deaths.
Please note: The information on this page refers to renal cell carcinoma, which represents about nine out of 10 kidney cancers.
A diagnosis of kidney cancer may be made through tests and procedures including:
The most common kidney cancer treatment is a type of kidney surgery called a nephrectomy.
Nonsurgical kidney cancer treatments include:
Learn more about Kidney Cancer
Clinical trials are research studies of new drugs, new combinations of drugs or already approved drugs being studied to treat patients in new/different ways. They may include new drug doses or new ways (schedules) to give the drugs. Clinical trials are run under strict guidelines. Their purpose is to help find out whether new cancer treatments are safe and effective or better than the standard (current) treatment.
Cancer is increasingly becoming a disease in which the genetic makeup of each individual cancer drives therapy. The Center for Genitourinary Cancers also has access to clinical trials involving these targeted therapy approaches.
The Cancer Center offers the Lazarex-MGH Cancer Care Equity Program, which strives to promote awareness about and access to cancer clinical trials through community outreach and education, financial assistance, and patient navigation. Find out more about this program.
(those who have not previously seen a doctor within the Mass General/Partners Healthcare Network)
Step 1. Obtain a medical record number (MRN). Call the Mass General Registration & Referral Center to register as a patient and obtain an MRN: 866-211-6588.
Step 2. Call the Cancer Center new patient appointment line: 617-726-5130. The schedulers can assist you in making the first available appointment with the appropriate physician. To help your call go smoothly, please have ready your:
Call the Genitourinary Center scheduling line: 617-724-5197. They will connect you with your treatment team.
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