Cancer and the kidney: dangereoux liasons or price paid for the progress in medicine?

Jolanta Małyszko _, Leszek Kozlowski, Klaudia Kozłowska, Maciej Małyszko and Jacek Małyszko

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:66601-66619. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.18094

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Jolanta Małyszko1, Leszek Kozlowski2, Klaudia Kozłowska1, Maciej Małyszko1 and Jacek Małyszko3

1Second Department of Nephrology and Hypertension with Dialysis Unit, Medical University of Bialystok, Bialystok, Poland

2Department of Oncological Surgery, Ministry of Interior Affairs, Bialystok, Poland

3First Department of Nephrology and Transplantology with Dialysis Unit, Medical University of Bialystok, Bialystok, Poland

Correspondence to:

Jolanta Małyszko, email: [email protected]

Keywords: chronic kidney disease, malignancy, acute kidney injury, chemotherapy, kidney function

Received: February 17, 2017     Accepted: April 23, 2017     Published: May 23, 2017


A long time ago, the links between renal disease and malignancy were observed, however, quite recently, their importance was recognized and ‘new’ subspecialty in nephrology, namely ‘onconephrology’ was established. In the XXI century, patients with malignancy make up the most growing number of the subjects seen for nephrology consult and/or critical care nephrology services. A plethora of renal problems may be found in patients with malignancy. They may influence not only their short-term outcomes but also the adequate therapy of the underlying oncological problem. Thus, all these kidney-related issues pose an important challenge for both specialities: oncology and nephrology. In the review a spectrum of acute and chronic renal injury caused by the malignancy is presented as well as the associations between renal disease and cancer. Assessment of kidney function and its importance in patients with malignancy is also discussed as medical oncologists should check the appropriate dose of chemotherapeutic drugs in relation to the actual renal function before prescribing them to the patients. Moreover, effects of kidney function on outcomes in oncology is presented. In addition, nephrology services should better understand both the biology of malignancy with its treatment to become a valuable part treating team to yield the best possible outcome. It is important for nephrology services to be acknowledged and to take an active participation in care of oncology patients.

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