June 16th, 2022 is World Kidney Cancer Day. The theme is ‘Talking Treatments,’ on this day clinicians, patients and caregivers will share their opinions about the opportunities and challenges of treatments People can ask questions before the day or on that day about the disease and clarify their doubts.
Survivors are of the opinion kidney cancer treatment can remove or destroy the cancer. There are chances of the cancer coming back. Some feel it might not get cured completely. So it’s very important to visit the doctor for follow up checkups. One such survivor was Kunal (name changed). At the age of 48 Kunal developed varicose veins in his right leg and had high blood pressure. One day when he found blood in his urine along with his wife came to us we-a few doctors examined him and sent him to take a CT scan which revealed 3.6 kg of tumor on his kidney. Surgery was done and the tumor and the kidney removed. A few months later a second tumor was discovered and this time it was difficult to perform surgery because the tumor had spread extensively. So an immunotherapeutic nivolumab- a new drug was used that basically takes the immune system and turns it on to fight the cancer. After every two weeks of the medication the tumor shrunk by 30%. Kunal was very happy as the quality of his life improved, he felt he was getting stronger, started to gain weight, was able to get back to work and above all Kunal and his wife were able to travel without any fear. After three years the treatment results were so good that he no longer needed any infusion of the drug. Today he proudly says that the drug has worked so well on his body that it can work on any ones. He adds that that he wishes to see cancer being eradicated totally in his life time.
ON THIS DAY SURVIVORS DISCUSS ABOUT:
- What exactly is kidney cancer? When there is an abnormal growth on the kidney tissue and the cells form a mass called tumor and if it is malignant it is diagnosed as kidney cancer. It commonly occurs between the ages of 65 and 75. Men are more likely to get this disease than women. Children can also develop this cancer.
- Types of Kidney Cancer—
- Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC)- 85% of adult kidney cancer is RCC. It can develop in one kidney or both.
- Renal Sarcoma—Only 1% of the people are affected with this cancer. If it is not treated can spread to nearby organs and bones.
- Wilms Tumor—This is the most common cancer among children. It accounts to 5% of kidney cancers.
SYMPTOMS OF KIDNEY CANCER:
Blood in the pee,
Loss of appetite and weight, fever
High blood pressure.
CAUSES OF KIDNEY CANCER:
SMOKING—Chain smokers are at a higher risk of getting kidney cancer.
OBESITY—The more overweight a person is higher the risk of getting kidney cancer.
HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE—Hypertension is an increased risk factor of kidney cancer.
Women who have received Radiation therapy of their reproductive organs can also develop the disease.
MAIN CHALLENGES AND AIMS OF WORLD KIDNEY DAY:
- PUBLIC AWARENESS: This day an opportunity to the survivors of kidney cancer patients and to the doctors to educate the general public about our amazing kidneys and its care. The functioning of the kidneys is shared on a daily basis, how they filter and clean 200 liters of blood. Survivors share their stories. Doctors also educate the people on donating a kidney Aand the improved facilities available in dialysis.
- THE MISSION OF WORLD KIDNEY DAY: To take proper care of the kidneys and have a regular checkup for renal disease. How to work towards its prevention, early recognition and renal protection is the mission. The global population is aging, so older patients with chronic renal failure are also increasing. Hence a mission of the physicians is to educate the public.
- WOMEN AND KIDNEY DISEASE: 50% of the world population is women, so on this day importance of women’s health especially their kidney health is also discussed. Around the world, access to women’s education and medical care is not equitable amongst men and women. On this day women are educated that pregnancy is a major cause of acute kidney injury hence protective measures are discussed. It is also seen that women are more likely to donate kidneys for transplantation than to receive them.
- COVID-19 AND THE KIDNEYS: Another major challenge today is COVID-19. The new corona virus disease 2019 has become a world health emergency. Many patients of corona virus have displayed not only respiratory failure but also kidney damage through kidney injury. So these patients need to be taken care of more intensively.
BETTER KIDNEY CARE:
There are three ways you can build your own path to better kidney care. They are—
- With the help of your health care team, make a treatment plan that fits your lifestyle, mobility, health status and dietary needs.
- Must follow your health plan, like taking your medicines as prescribed and stay up to date on vaccines. The COVID-19 and flu vaccines are important for people with kidney disease.
- Build a kidney healthy lifestyle, follow a healthy diet, drink the required beverages you enjoy, go for a walk or while going up take the stair case to stay active, manage your weight and sleep well to get enough rest.
WORLD KIDNEY CANCER DAY 2022 THEME:
The theme for this day, this year is –‘We need to talk about treatment options.’ This day creates better conversations between patients, care givers and doctors about treatment options.
On this day health care professionals around the globe come together to talk about how they were feeling. Kidney Cancer patients give a report about their treatment to normalize their feelings, to raise awareness of the disease and start conversations. The more informed you are about your treatment options, the better conversations you can have with your clinical team.