Symptoms and signs
- Abdominal swelling
- Haematuria - fresh or old blood (old blood may make the urine resemble the appearance of cola)
- Unexplained, recurrent pyrexia
- Back to back viral illnesses
- Constipation or a change in bowel habit
About renal tumours in children
- Around 90 children a year are diagnosed with renal tumours
- 90% are Wilms tumours (also known as nephroblastoma)
- The other 10% of renal tumours are made up of more aggressive tumour subtypes
Malignant rhabdoid tumours
Clear cell sarcoma of the kidney
Renal cell carcinoma
Wilms tumours are embryonal tumours. Usually they are unilateral, but occasionally can be bilateral (Stage V).
Wilms usually occurs in children under the age of 5 with a peak incidence of 1-3 years of age.
Unilateral tumours are equally common in males and females, but bilateral tumours are more common in girls (1:2 ratio).
Although the causes of Wilms tumour are unknown, up to one in six children also have a congenital malformation syndrome as well including:
WAGR syndrome (Wilms tumour predisposition, aniridia, genitourinary anomalies, retardation).
Chemotherapy and surgery, usually nephrectomy, are the mainstay of treatment. Higher risk tumours receive more aggressive chemotherapy with or without radiation too.
Five-year survival averages at 90%, depending on staging and histology. However, 5% of Wilms’ tumours have unfavourable ‘anaplastic’ histology giving them much worse outcomes.
Bilateral disease has a worse prognosis than unilateral and children with other types of renal tumour have a poorer prognosis.
Malignant rhabdoid tumours, whilst rare, have few survivors.
Useful information resources
These can be found published by the Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group
My Child has a kidney tumour - produced by the Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group and Bethany's Wish.
My Child's Wilms' Tumour has come back: treatment for relapsed Wilms' - produced by the Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group and Bethany's Wish.