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One in four kidney cancer patients has no access to named nurse specialist

Poll also finds almost half of people with kidney cancer had a late-stage diagnosis

Poll also finds almost half of kidney cancer patients had a late-stage diagnosis

One in four patients with kidney cancer do not have a named specialist nurse, a survey suggests.

Kidney cancer is often diagnosed at a late stage

The poll by charity Kidney Cancer UK also found nearly half (46%) of patients were diagnosed at late stages, reducing their chance of successful treatment.

Kidney cancer is the seventh most common cancer in the UK, yet there is currently no test to detect it in the early stages.

    Poll also finds almost half of kidney cancer patients had a late-stage diagnosis

    Close up of cancerous cells found in the kidneys
    Picture: SPL

    One in four patients with kidney cancer do not have a named specialist nurse, a survey suggests.

    Kidney cancer is often diagnosed at a late stage

    The poll by charity Kidney Cancer UK also found nearly half (46%) of patients were diagnosed at late stages, reducing their chance of successful treatment.

    Kidney cancer is the seventh most common cancer in the UK, yet there is currently no test to detect it in the early stages.

    The poll of 381 UK adults, released to coincide with Kidney Cancer Awareness week (1-5 February), also revealed:

    • 60% (229) were diagnosed following tests, scans, or visits to emergency departments for treatments unrelated to kidney cancer
    • 21% (80) were initially misdiagnosed for conditions including kidney stones, urinary tract infection or irritable bowel syndrome
    • 67% (255) were not offered any form of counselling following diagnosis.

    Vital post-diagnosis specialist support can ‘enhance well-being’

    Michelle Greenwood, a clinical nurse specialist at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London
    Michelle Greenwood

    Michelle Greenwood, a clinical nurse specialist (CNS) at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, said patients need to feel well supported following a diagnosis.

    ‘Support and information provided by a CNS is vital,’ she added.

    ‘It is important they are linked to a CNS as soon as possible and are signposted to kidney cancer charities who can provide additional support and information. This can enhance their emotional well-being.’

    Kidney Cancer UK said that while the results of the poll, carried out in October and November 2020, were indicative of COVID-19 pressures, issues around late-stage diagnosis pre-dated the pandemic.

    The charity has renewed its call for the government to fund research into a screening process that can be delivered at a GP surgery or clinic.


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