Tests for kidney cancer
If your doctor suspects kidney cancer, you may have some of the following tests but you are unlikely to need them all.
If you feel anxious while waiting for test results, try talking to a close friend or relative, or call Cancer Council 13 11 20 for support.
Learn more about:
- Blood and urine tests
- Imaging scans
- Tissue biopsy
Blood and urine tests
You will probably have urine and blood tests to check your general health and look for signs of a problem in the kidneys. These tests do not diagnose kidney cancer. They may include:
- a full blood count to check the levels of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets
- tests to check how well your kidneys are working
- blood chemistry tests to measure the levels of certain substances in the blood (e.g. high levels of the enzyme alkaline phosphatase could be a sign that kidney cancer has spread to the bones).
Podcast: Tests and Cancer
Dr Alarick Picardo, Urologist, Fiona Stanley Hospital, WA; Heidi Castleden, Consumer; Donna Clifford, Urology Nurse Practitioner, Royal Adelaide Hospital, SA; Mike Kingsley, Consumer; Prof Paul De Souza, Medical Oncologist and Professor of Medicine, Nepean Cancer Care Centre, The University of Sydney, NSW; Prof Declan Murphy, Urologist and Director of Genitourinary Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Caitriona Nienaber, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council WA; Luke O’Connor, Urology Nurse, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, QLD; A/Prof Shankar Siva, Radiation Oncologist and Cancer Council Victoria Colebatch Fellow, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; A/Prof Homi Zargar, Uro-Oncologist and Robotic Surgeon, Western Health and Royal Melbourne Hospital, VIC.
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