The kidney cancer survival rate in Qatar has touched a remarkable level of 60 percent because of high standards of diagnosis and treatment methods.
According to a senior consultant at Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) National Centre for Cancer Care and Research (NCCCR), Dr. Abdul Rehman Zar Gul, the survival rate is also higher than in other countries.
Kidney cancer is a severe medical condition affecting many individuals worldwide, including those in Qatar. The incidence of kidney cancer in Qatar has been rising over the years, and it is now one of the country’s leading causes of cancer-related deaths, yet it is lower compared to other countries.
Dr. Zar Gul says kidney cancer is a significant health concern in Qatar and many other countries. However, with the proper diagnosis and treatment, many patients in Qatar can overcome this disease and lead healthy, productive lives.
According to available data from the Qatar National Cancer Registry (QNCR), kidney cancer is the seventh most common cancer among Qatari males and the eleventh most common among Qatari females. Between 2011 and 2015, the incidence rate of kidney cancer in Qatar was 5.6 cases per 100,000 people.
“This rate is relatively low compared to other countries, such as the United States, where the incidence rate is around 15 cases per 100,000 people,” Dr. Zar Gul has said in the News and Views newsletter of NCCCR.
In Qatar, like in other countries, medical professionals typically diagnose kidney cancer using imaging tests such as CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasounds.
Consultants in the urology multidisciplinary team discuss the cases and decide on further management.
“The treatment options for kidney cancer in Qatar depend on several factors, including the cancer stage, the tumor’s size and location, and the patient’s overall health. The standard treatment options for kidney cancer include surgery, which includes radical or partial nephrectomy,” said Dr. Zar Gul.
“Surgery is often the first-line treatment for kidney cancer in Qatar, and it involves removing the entire kidney or just the tumour. If the cancer has spread to other organs, additional surgeries may be necessary to remove the affected tissues,” he said.
Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to kill cancer cells and shrink tumours. Still, it is not often used as a primary treatment for kidney cancer because the kidneys are radioresistant. Chemotherapy is another treatment option for cancer, but it is not very effective in treating kidney cancer. However, targeted treatment like TKI and immunotherapy can effectively control the disease in advanced and metastatic cases.
“In Qatar, the outlook for kidney cancer patients is generally good, especially when doctors diagnose and treat the cancer early. The survival rate for kidney cancer in Qatar is around 60%, higher than in other countries. However, this rate drops significantly for advanced or metastatic kidney cancer patients,” said Dr. Zar Gul.
He also advised individuals to maintain a healthy lifestyle and stop smoking to help prevent kidney cancer and catch it early if it does develop.
Fazeena Saleem | The Peninsula
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