Wilms' Tumor Treatment
- What It Is
- Risk Factors
- Living With
- User Questions
- Alternative Treatment
- Care Guide
- Questions for Your Doctor
- When to Contact a Doctor
- Find a Doctor
- Resource Guide
How to Treat Wilms' Tumor
Wilms' tumor can be cured in most children. The specific treatment depends on if the cancer has spread beyond the kidney to other parts of the body, and if so, how far. The process for determining this, called staging, uses the results of the diagnostic tests. Tumor size, cell type, whether the tumor is favorable or unfavorable, and your child's age and health are also considered in choosing treatment.
In general, tumors with favorable histology are treated only with combinations of chemotherapy, and those with unfavorable patterns or which are recurrent, often require the addition of radiation therapy.
Treatment may include:
The main treatment for Wilms' tumor is a type of surgery called nephrectomy. This is the removal of the kidney with the tumor. The tissue around the kidney may also be removed, as well as some nearby lymph nodes. The remaining kidney will take care of all of the needed functions for the body.
Chemotherapy is the use of drugs to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy can be given in many forms including: pill, injection, and via a catheter placed in a blood vessel. The drugs enter the bloodstream and travel through the body killing mostly cancer cells, but also some healthy cells.
This is the use of radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation may be:
- External radiation therapy-radiation directed at the tumor from a source outside the body
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