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Majority of kidney cancers diagnosed at earliest stage
Date:5/18/2008

Patients in the United States today are now much more likely to be diagnosed with smaller tumors, in the earliest, most treatable stage of kidney cancer than a decade ago, leading to a slightly higher survival rate, according to the results of a national study led by a UC San Diego Medical Center researcher.

Christopher J. Kane, M.D., chief of urology at UC San Diego Medical Center and the Moores UCSD Cancer Center, and a team of researchers, analyzed records of more than 200,000 kidney cancer patients described in the National Cancer Data Base to look at how kidney cancer presentation has changed over a twelve-year period. The National Cancer Database is sponsored by the American College of Surgeons and the Joint Commission on Cancer and includes information from hospital tumor registries in the U.S. The study will be published online for the May 2008 edition of Cancer.

The changes in kidney cancer presentation are visible nationally and quite dramatic. If you are diagnosed with kidney cancer today, it is more likely to be at the earliest stage I level as opposed to more advanced stage II, III or IV just a decade ago, said Kane, a surgeon who specializes in treating kidney and prostate cancers. The study also reveals a small but significantly higher survival rate for recently diagnosed kidney cancers. This is good news for the more than 50,000 kidney cancer patients who will be identified this year.

The analysis looked at kidney cancer data between 1993 and 2004. Findings reveal that stage I kidney cancers increased from approximately 43% in 1993 to 57% in 2004, but decreased in stages II-IV of the disease. The average size of the stage I tumors decreased from 4.1 cm in 1993 to 3.6 cm in 2003. Overall survival for all patients with kidney cancer increased 3.3% between 1993 and 2003. The 5-year survival rate for people with stage I kidney cancer is now 88% or better.

While the reason for the downward trend is not known wi
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Contact: Jackie Carr
jcarr@ucsd.edu
619-543-6163
University of California - San Diego
Source:Eurekalert

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