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J Urol. 1990 Nov;144(5):1097-9.

Incidence and properties of renal masses and asymptomatic renal cell carcinoma detected by abdominal ultrasonography.

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  • 1Division of Urology and Diagnostic Imagings, Kanto Central Hospital, Tokyo, Japan.


Renal ultrasonography was performed in 45,905 adults, including 41,364 without any signs suggesting urinary tract malignancies, 1,667 with microscopic hematuria only and 2,874 with some signs of malignancy. Renal lesions were found in 355 adults (0.858%) in the asymptomatic, 39 (2.3%) in the microscopic hematuria and 75 (2.6%) in the symptomatic groups, respectively. Renal cell carcinoma was found in 35 (7.5%) lesions: 19 (5.4%) in the asymptomatic, none in the microscopic hematuria and 16 (21.3%) in the symptomatic groups. A total of 47 patients, including 12 other renal cell carcinoma patients transferred from related hospitals, was grouped into 28 without and 19 with symptoms. Primary tumor size and clinical stages were significantly smaller and lower, respectively, in the asymptomatic group than in the symptomatic group. Radical nephrectomy was performed in all but 2 asymptomatic patients. The 5-year survival rates after nephrectomy were 94.7 and 60.9% for the asymptomatic and symptomatic groups, respectively (p less than 0.01). The results indicate that ultrasonography is a useful tool to detect low stage asymptomatic renal cell carcinoma at low cost.

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