Kidney Adenocarcinoma at 20x Magnification

The kidneys are organs that function chiefly in the maintenance of suitable water, electrolyte, and acid-base balances in the body and the filtration and excretion of metabolic wastes. A number of different diseases and conditions may affect the kidneys and interfere with their normal processes, including various types of cancer. Kidney adenocarcinoma, also known as renal cell carcinoma, is the most common form of kidney cancer in adults. Similar to most types of cancer, scientists do not yet know exactly what causes adenocarcinoma of the kidneys, though a number of risk factors have been identified. Smoking is one of the most notable of these factors, smokers being twice as likely as non-smokers to develop the disease. Being male, 50 years or older, and obese, as well as having certain rare disorders, such as von Hippel-Lindau syndrome, a family history of kidney cancer, or long-term dialysis treatments also can increase one’s risk.

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