Symptoms & Signs
- Back pain, located where ribs and spine meet
- Bloody urine
- Burning, pain, or discomfort with urination
- Dark, rust-colored, or brown urine
- Flank pain
- Need to urinate frequently at night
- Unintentional weight loss
- Urinary frequency or urgency
- Urinary hesitancy
Diagnosis & Tests
A physician will examine the abdomen by touch. Rarely is there a lump (mass) or enlarged kidney. The patient may have blood in the urine. A complete blood count (CBC) may show anemia.
Cancer cells may appear on the following tests:
- Urine cytology (microscopic examination of cells) taken during a cystoscopy
- Urine cytology taken from a urine sample
The tumor, or signs of urinary obstruction, may appear on:
- Abdominal CT scan
- Intravenous pyelogram (IVP)
- Kidney ultrasound
- MRI of abdomen
- Renal scan
An x-ray, CT scan, or MRI of other areas of the body may show that the cancer has spread from the kidneys.
Review Date : 11/30/2009
Reviewed By : David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; Herbert Y. Lin, MD, PHD, Nephrologist, Massachusetts General Hospital; Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.