A risk factor is something that increases your chances of getting a disease or condition. It is possible to develop kidney cancer with or without the risk factors listed below. Most people with these risk factors never develop kidney cancer. However, in general, the more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of developing a disease. If you have a number of risk factors, ask your healthcare provider what you can do to reduce your risk.
Risk factors for kidney cancer include the following:
Substances in cigarettes, cigars, and other tobacco products have been shown to cause kidney cancer. The body absorbs the cancer-causing chemicals into the bloodstream. When the kidneys filter the blood, they are exposed to high concentrations of these chemicals, which can lead to cancer. Your chance of developing kidney cancer is increased 40% if you smoke cigarettes.
Being overweight can increase the risk of kidney cancer.
may alter hormone levels associated with kidney cancer.
A tendency to develop certain types of renal cell cancer may be inherited (that is, may run in families). These include kidney cancer associated with
Von Hippel-Lindau disease
, a hereditary disorder in which people are prone to renal cell carcinoma and a number of other types of tumors.
Males are more likely than females to develop renal cancer. This may be related to men historically being more likely to have occupational exposure to toxins and to smoke.
Meat that is cooked to "well done" may possibly increase the risk of kidney cancer. The reason for this is unknown.
Kidney cancer occurs more frequently after age 50.
Exposure to asbestos, organic solvents, and the metal cadmium may increase your risk of kidney cancer.
Several medical conditions that involve kidney function may increase your risk. These include the following:
High blood pressure
—Doctors are not sure if it is high blood pressure or some of the drugs used to treat the condition that increases the risk.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a