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48

NCCN Guidelines for Patients

®

:

Kidney Cancer, Version 1.2017

5

Treatment guide

Stage I kidney cancer

Imaging tests of your abdomen are recommended

more often and for a longer period of time after

thermal ablation than surgery. This is because there

is a slightly higher chance of local recurrence after

thermal ablation than surgery.

The initial imaging tests should be done with and

without contrast to make the pictures clearer. If the

imaging tests show signs of tumor growth, spread,

or return, then a biopsy is recommended. An x-ray or

CT scan of your chest will show if cancer has spread

to your lungs.

Imaging tests of your chest are important since

the lungs are the most common site of distant

recurrence. Imaging tests of your chest should

be done once a year for the first few years after

treatment. After that, they may be used as needed to

check out signs or symptoms of cancer in your lungs.

Imaging tests of your pelvis, head, spine, and bones

are not recommended as standard follow-up tests

for all patients. These tests may be done as needed

such as if there are signs or symptoms of cancer

spread. A CT or MRI scan of your head may be

done to show if cancer has spread to your brain.

Some symptoms of cancer in the brain are chronic

headaches, seizures, loss of balance, and weakness

on one side of the body. If you have bone pain or

high levels of ALP in your blood, then a bone scan

may be done to show if cancer has spread to your

bones. If follow-up tests show that cancer has come

back, see Guide 7 for recommended treatments for

relapsed kidney cancer.

Next steps

If follow-up tests show that cancer has come back,

see Guide 8 on page 52 for recommended treatment

for relapsed kidney cancer.