Renal Cell Carcinoma: The Translation of Molecular Biology Into New Treatments, New Patient Outcomes, and Nursing Implications

Nancy P. Moldawer

Robert Figlin

renal cell carcinoma, meta-analysis
ONF 2008, 35(4), 699-708. DOI: 10.1188/08.ONF.699-708

Purpose/Objectives: To provide an overview of the current knowledge and treatment options for renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

Data Sources: Published articles, published abstracts, online databases, and package inserts.

Data Synthesis: Researchers have an increased understanding of the genetic and prognostic risk factors associated with RCC. Most patients with this rare type of cancer have or will develop metastasis. Nephrectomy treats localized disease and cytokine therapy was the previous standard for metastatic disease, but newly approved targeted agents, such as sorafenib, temsirolimus, and sunitinib, as well as investigational agents such as bevacizumab, are improving patient outcomes.

Conclusions: Understanding the biologic basis of RCC has led to therapies that are transforming the goals for treatment outcomes in patients with metastatic disease and increasing time to progression with manageable side effects.

Implications for Nursing: Counseling patients and managing treatment-related side effects of therapy are critical interventions for healthcare professionals caring for patients with RCC. Evolving treatments for metastatic disease are providing better options for patients and changing disease management.

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