Answers to Common Questions

Find answers to commonly asked questions about urological conditions and procedures in our comprehensive Urological FAQ section. We aim to provide valuable information to help you better understand various aspects of urology. From the differences between laparoscopic and robotic surgery to the risks of urinary tract infections (UTIs) and prostate cancer, we address important topics related to urological health. Additionally, we discuss the risk factors associated with kidney disease. Explore our FAQ section to expand your knowledge and gain insights into urological issues.

What is the difference between laproscopy and robotic surgery ?

Laproscopic surgeries have limited capabilities including standard 2D video monitor and rigid hand operated instruments, which surgeons have to depend on to operate through small incisions. Whereas in Robotic Surgery the Surgeon gets a 3D view , can have greater surgical precision, increased range of motion, improved dexterity, enhanced visualization and improved access .

Is UTI (Urinary Tract Infection ) dangerous?

Repeated UTI can damage the kidney and may lead to kidney failure.

Am I more likely to get prostate cancer if my father or brother had it?

You are 2 ½ times more likely to get prostate cancer if your father or brother has been diagnosed with prostate cancer compared to a person who has no affected relatives.

The chances are more if your relative was below the age of 60 when he was diagnosed with it.

And you have also have more chances if you have more than one relative who have diagnosed with the disease.

Who is at risk for kidney disease?

If you suffer from high blood pressure, are diabetic, have a family history of kidney failure, or are over the age of 60.

How often should one get checked for kidney disease?

You should get tested for kidney diseaseonce a year if you are in a high-risk category(see ‘Who is at risk for kidney disease?’ mentioning any possible symptoms you are experiencing to your doctor.

What are some indicative signs of kidney disease?

Fatigue, reduction in energy, having trouble concentrating or sleeping, itchy skin, increase in frequency of urination, blood in urine or foamy urine, swollen ankles and feet, loss of appetite, puffiness around the eyes and cramping muscles are all common symptoms of kidney disease.

What is kidney cancer?

Kidney cancer is cancer that starts in the kidney, the most common type being renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

How common is RCC among kidney cancers?

Around 90% of kidney cancers are classified as RCC. The remaining 10% are transitional cell carcinomas, Wilms tumors (in children), and some other rare tumors.

Are there various types of renal cell carcinoma (RCC)?

Yes, RCC is of different types and are classified by pathologists based on how they look under a microscope. Some types are:

Clear cell – this is the most common type
Papillary – this is the second most common type
Chromophobe – this is a rare form
Collecting duct – this is also a rare form

Are men more prone to kidney cancer?

Yes, men get kidney cancer more commonly than women.

Are smokers more at risk for kidney cancer than non – smokers?

Yes, smokers are more likely to get kidney cancer than non – smokers.

What are some other risk factors for kidney cancer?

Having Von Hippel-Lindau disease, family history of kidney cancer, obesity, and fairly regular contact with chemicals like cadmium, asbestos or benzene.

Can you get kidney cancer if you don’t fall into a high-risk category?

Yes, many people with no known risk factors still get kidney cancer.

Can you see symptoms of kidney cancer as soon as you get it?

Early on, kidney cancer often shows no symptoms, but symptoms manifest themselves as the cancer grows.

What are the common signs of kidney cancer?

People with kidney cancer may have some or any combination of the following symptoms:

Blood in the urine, side or back pain, a lump or a mass in the side or lower back, feeling tired usually, loss of appetite loss, sudden weight loss without effort, fever without any apparent cause, leg or ankle swelling, high blood pressure.

How can one diagnose kidney cancer?

First, a healthcare provider will ask about the person’s health history, and the person’s family history of kidney cancer and other possiblyrelated conditions. The healthcare provider will also conduct a physical exam, test the urine for blood, protein, bacteria and cancer cells. Imaging and biopsy is also done to diagnose kidney cancer.

Can a blood test tell me if I have kidney cancer?

No, there is no blood test that can diagnose kidney cancer. However, a complete blood count (CBC) and blood chemistry test will show signs in the blood that are linked with kidney cancer.

What Imaging tests are done to detect kidney cancer?

Imaging tests used include a CT scan, an ultrasound, an Intravenous pyelogram (IVP) and an angiography.

What is done during a biopsy?

During a biopsy, a healthcare provider removes a small piece of the tumor that a pathologist then looks at under a microscope. For kidney cancer, a fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy is done.

Is it essential to wait for a biopsy result before kidney cancer is diagnosed?

In most cases if a CT scan or an MRI shows a possibility of kidney cancer, surgery is done to remove the tumour or even the entire kidney. The biopsy is done from tissue taken during surgery to confirm kidney cancer diagnosis.

What is the treatment for kidney cancer?

Kidney cancer may have only one of more of the following treatments: Surgery,Targeted therapy, Biological therapy, Radiation therapy, Chemotherapy, Ablation therapy. There are also some new treatments that are tested through clinical trials. You may want to ask your doctor about these as well.

What does surgery for kidney cancer mean?

Kidney cancer surgery is done to remove the tumor from the kidney. Either the whole kidney or part of the kidney with the tumor may be removed. This is the standard treatment for cancer that is contained in the kidney and has not spread to any other organ.

What is targeted therapy in kidney cancer treatment?

Targeted therapy implies that medicines are given to attack specific areas in the cancer cells or target the blood supply of the tumour. Targeted therapy is the most common treatment for more advanced kidney cancers.

What is biological therapy in kidney cancer treatment?

Biological therapy is also used to treat kidney cancer so as to reduce the chance that the cancer will spread to any other part of the body. This therapy uses medicines that may help stimulate the body’s immune system to fight cancer cells.

What is chemotherapy in kidney cancer treatment?

Chemotherapy is used to try to kill cancer cells in the kidney and also those that have spread to other organs.

Who is at risk for kidney disease?

If you suffer from high blood pressure, are diabetic, have a family history of kidney failure, or are over the age of 60.

What is ablation therapy in kidney cancer treatment?

Two main types of ablation therapy are used to treat kidney cancer. Both therapies are done by inserting a needle into an area with cancer cells. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) uses energy waves to kill cancer cells. Cryoablation uses extreme cold to kill cancer cells.

What are clinical trials in kidney cancer treatment?

The cancer research fraternity is always finding new ways to treat kidney cancer. These new treatments are tested in ‘clinical trials’ on patients. Before beginning any cancer treatment, you may want to ask your doctor if there are any clinical trials that may help you.

What is prostate cancer?

Prostate cancer is cancer that occurs in the prostate – which is a small walnut-shaped gland in men. The prostate produces the seminal fluid that nourishes and transports sperm.

Isprostate cancer common in men?

Yes, prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in men.

How quickly can Prostate cancer spread?

Usually prostate cancer grows slowly and is initially confined to the prostate gland, where it may not cause serious harm. However, while some types of prostate cancer grow slowly and may need very little or even no treatment, some other types are more aggressive and can spread quite quickly.

What are some indicative signs of prostate cancer?

Though prostate cancer may show no clear signs in its early stages, some indicative signs are fatigue, reduction in energy, having trouble concentrating or sleeping, increase in frequency of urination, blood in urine or foamy urine, swollen ankles and feet, loss of appetite, itchy skin, puffiness around the eyes and cramps.

What are some indicative signs of advanced prostate cancer?

Prostate cancer that’s more advanced often has the following signs and symptoms: trouble urinating, a decreased force in the stream of urine, blood in semen, discomfort in the pelvic area, erectile dysfunction and bone pain.

Does having any or a few of these signs mean I have prostate cancer?

No, these symptoms do not automatically mean that you have prostate cancer. They can indicate the presence of some other noncancerous condition, such as benign prostatic hyperplasia.

Can Iprevent getting prostate cancer?

While there is no known way to prevent prostate cancer, one can certainly make lifestyle changes such as healthy eating and exercising, which may reduce your risk of developing this disease.

How is prostate cancer diagnosed?

The doctor will usually perform a digital rectal exam (DRE) and take a blood test to check your prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels. If the results are not normal, you may additionally undergo a transrectal ultrasound and a transrectal biopsy.

Do high PSA levels mean I definitely have prostate cancer?

No, they do not necessarily mean that. They can also indicate a noncancerous condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia. If your PSA levels are elevated, your doctor will do some other tests to find out why you have elevated PSA levels.

What are the treatment options for prostate cancer?

Treatment options may vary depending partly on the stage of prostate cancer. They may include radiation therapy, hormone therapy, chemotherapy and surgery to remove the cancer cells

How will I be able to tell if my treatment is working?

You can check whether your treatment is working is by monitoring PSA levels, keeping your doctor’s appointments diligently, keeping a record of your PSA results and following your doctor’s recommendations.

Will the treatmenthave any side effects?

Side effects, if any, depend on the type of treatment you receives. It is vital to tell your doctor about any side effects.

What are the most common side effects of prostate cancer treatments?

Side effects depend on your treatment. The most common side effects are urinary dysfunction, bowel dysfunction, erectile dysfunction, loss of fertility and the general side effects of hormone therapy and chemotherapy.

Can I take vitamins or supplements during my treatment for prostate cancer?

Some vitamins and herbal supplements may affect the way your treatment works. So it is advisable to check with your doctor before you take any vitamins or supplements.

After surgery for prostate cancer, do I still need to treat my PSA?

Post-surgery, you will need to test your PSA after 3 and 6 months, and then annually.

What will happen if I decide not to treat my prostate cancer?

That decision lies with patients and their families. However many cancers, when they are detected early, are highly treatable, and patients live many years and even decades after their initial diagnosis. For some older men, ‘active surveillance’ is sometimes recommended depending on many factors. A decision on whether you should undergo treatment or not needs to be made after consulting your doctor and family members, and carefully weighing all available options.

Does age determine the kind of treatment I receive?

Yes, some younger, healthy men may receive therapy while older men with cancer that is growing slowly may be advised active surveillance. Better screening technology means most prostate cancers are diagnosed early and several are slow-growing tumours.

What are the other factors that determine my treatment?

The stage of cancer and a person’s overall health are the other factors taken into consideration while determining treatment.

The stage of cancer and a person’s overall health are the other factors taken into consideration while determining treatment.

Some cancers, such as breast, prostate, colon and pancreatic, can have a hereditary component, so it is advisable for family members to be tested.

What is meant by ‘early detection’ of prostate cancer?

Early detection refers to situations where prostate cancer is detected while it is still confined to the prostate gland. Early detection implies a better chance of successful treatment.

Can one be cured of prostate cancer?

If detected in the early stage and treated properly, it can be got rid of completely. If the cancer has spread outside the prostate gland, other ‘systemic’ treatments may be needed to destroy cancer cells located in other parts of the body.