Black patients with kidney cancer have poorer survival than whites

Among patients with the most common form of kidney cancer, whites consistently have a survival advantage over blacks, regardless of patient and tumor characteristics or surgical treatment. That is the conclusion of a new study published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society. The study's results suggest that additional efforts are needed to prolong the survival of all patients with kidney cancer.

Since the mid-1990s, black Americans have had a higher incidence of renal cell carcinoma, the most common form of , than white Americans. Research also suggests that there are in the survival of patients with renal cell carcinoma, with black patients dying earlier than whites.

When Wong-Ho Chow, PhD, currently of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, and her colleagues at the analyzed national data of nearly 40,000 patients, they confirmed the poorer survival rates for black patients compared with whites. Specifically, 72.6 percent of white patients survived for at least five years, compared with 68.0 percent of black patients. The survival advantage of white patients over black patients was consistently seen in all subgroups of patients, regardless of gender, age, tumor stage or size, tumor subtype, or type of surgical treatment.

Surprisingly, a higher percentage of black patients than white patients were diagnosed at the localized stage, with smaller tumors, or with a less aggressive subtype of cancer. These factors should indicate a better prognosis. Also, compared with white patients, a slightly higher percentage of black patients received no surgical treatment, which is associated with a substantially poorer prognosis.

Additional studies are needed to determine why these disparities exist. "We cannot rule out the possibility that other factors not measured in our study—such as obesity, high blood pressure, access to care, and genetic susceptibility—may be contributing to the persistent disparities," said Dr. Chow.

More information: "Racial disparity in renal cell carcinoma patient survival according to demographic and clinical characteristics." Wong-Ho Chow, Brian Shuch, W. Marston Linehan, Susan S. Devesa. CANCER; Published Online: November 12, 2012 DOI: 10.1002/cncr.27690

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Cancer patients need anxiety, depression screening

10 hours ago

(HealthDay)—It is important to recognize and treat anxiety or depression among cancer patients, according to a clinical guideline published online April 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Pre-HPV vaccine, most oropharyngeal cancers HPV+

11 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Most oropharyngeal cancers in the United States diagnosed between 1995 and 2005 were positive for human papillomavirus (HPV), specifically HPV 16 or 18, according to a study published in the May issue of the ...

'Dustman' protein helps bin cancer cells

Apr 21, 2014

Cancer researchers have discovered a new 'dustman' role for a molecule that helps a drug kill cancer cells according to a study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) ...

User comments