In addition to surgery, other treatment options for kidney cancer include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, targeted therapy and immunotherapy. Learn more about each of these therapy treatments below.
For some people with kidney cancer, radiation therapy can be used to alleviate pain or other symptoms caused by tumor growth. Radiation is most often used along with other kidney cancer treatments, like surgery targeted therapy.
Your doctor may advise radiation to:
- Relieve symptoms such as pain or bleedingcaused by a spread of cancer.
- Kill any remaining small areas of cancer following a surgery.
- Treat a single area of cancer spread, such as a tumor in the brain or an adrenal gland. This may be done along with surgery to treat the tumor.
Targeted therapies are medications that are relatively new and often used in cases of advanced kidney cancer. They typically work by preventing the growth of new blood vessels by the tumor which may decrease the size of the tumor and control their growth. Some of these medications are given intraveneously and some are given as a pill. These medications are different from chemotherapy and are more specific targeting cancer cell growth mechanisms.
In some cases, immunotherapy may be an option for treatment of kidney cancer. Immunotherapy drugs help a patient’s immune system fight the cancer cells.