The kidneys are two organs that sit on both sides of the spine in the middle of the back. These organs are responsible for filtering nearly fifty gallons of blood per day to produce one to two quarts of urine consisting of extra fluid and wastes. The kidneys also mediate blood pressure, produce red blood cells, make vitamin D, and manage acidity in the body. Kidney malignancy can cause one or more of these functions to become compromised, and when malignancy begins in one of the kidneys, it is referred to as kidney cancer. Primary kidney cancer starts in one of the cells of the kidney tissues, and secondary kidney cancer occurs when malignancy metastasizes from another location in the body. Early kidney cancer symptoms include fatigue, fever, weight loss, kidney pain, and appetite loss. Advanced stages manifest with hematuria, lower extremity swelling, and a lump in the side.
Several factors can increase the risk of developing kidney cancer. Learn about them now.
Being Overweight Or Obese
Being overweight or obese can increase an individual's risk of developing cancer in their kidneys, as it can cause an individual to develop other kidney cancer risk factors including high blood pressure and diabetes. However, obesity is also proven to be an independent risk factor for kidney cancer. Obesity raises the risk of developing a type of kidney cancer called renal cell carcinoma. Obesity causes increased blood volume in comparison to an individual who is not obese. The kidneys are responsible for filtering the blood to extract waste substances and excess fluids so they can be excreted in the form of urine. The kidneys have to work harder to filter a higher than normal blood volume. Obesity also causes numerous hormonal fluctuations known to have an association with the carcinogenesis of kidney tissues. White blood cells called cytokines and steroid hormones can be released from adipose tissues in the body of an obese individual. High levels of insulin-like growth factor 1 are also common in obese individuals, compounding the effects of the aforementioned mechanisms. This combination can halt proper cell apoptosis and stimulate tumor cell growth in the kidney tissues.
Learn more about the risk factors and causes linked to kidney cancer now.