- Posted by jdavis on August 1, 2011
by Mayo Clinic staff
Taking steps to improve your health may help reduce your risk of kidney cancer. To reduce your risk, try to:
Quit smoking. If you smoke, quit. Many options for quitting exist, including support programs, medications and nicotine replacement products. Tell your doctor you want to quit and discuss your options together.
Eat more fruits and vegetables. Add more fruits and vegetables to your diet. A variety of fruits and vegetables helps ensure that you’re getting all the nutrients that your body needs. Replacing some of your snacks and side dishes with fruits and vegetables may help you lose weight.
Exercise regularly. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise on most days. If you haven’t been active before, get your doctor’s permission. Start out slowly, and gradually increase the amount of time you exercise. Consider exercises such as walking or riding a bike.
Maintain a healthy weight. Work to maintain a healthy weight. If you’re overweight or obese, reduce the amount of calories you eat each day and try to exercise most days of the week. Ask your doctor about other healthy strategies to help you lose weight.
Control high blood pressure. Ask your doctor to check your blood pressure at your next appointment. If your blood pressure is high, you can discuss options for lowering your numbers. Lifestyle measures, such as exercise, weight loss and diet changes, can help. Some people may need to add medications to lower their blood pressure. Discuss your options with your doctor.
Reduce or avoid exposure to environmental toxins. If you work with toxic chemicals, take special precautions such as wearing a mask and heavy gloves. In the United States, your employer is required to tell you what chemicals you may be exposed to on the job. Follow your employer’s safety procedures and ask your doctor if there are other ways to protect yourself from chemical exposure.
Common symptoms of kidney cancer include:
- Blood in the urine (making the urine slightly rusty to deep red)
- Pain in the side that does not go away
- A lump or mass in the side or the abdomen
- Weight loss
- Feeling very tired or having a general feeling of poor health
Most often, these symptoms do not mean cancer. An infection, a cyst, or another problem also can cause the same symptoms. A person with any of these symptoms should see a doctor so that any problem can be diagnosed and treated as early as possible.