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Risk Factors

  • Age: renal cancer is most common in the 55-60 year age range
  • Gender: more frequent in men than women (2:1)
  • Race: caucasian men are at somewhat higher risk than African-Amerian men (transitional cell carcinoma is twice as common among Caucasian men as among African-American men).
  • Smoking: smokers are four times as likely to develop transitional cell kidney and ureter cancer as non-smokers.
  • Family history: people with a family history of kidney or ureter cancer, especially when other inherited disorders are present, such as tuberous sclerosis, von Hippel-Laundau's disease, Sturge-Weber syndrome, neurofibromatosis, and ataxia telangiectasia.
  • Environment
    • Exposure to thorotrast
    • People living in urban, industrialized areas
    • People whose jobs expose them to trace metals such as cadmium
    • Exposure to certain chemicals such as nitrosamines, aflatoxins, lead acetate, and potassium bromate
    • Exposure to asbestos
  • Intake: use of analgesic phenacetin for a prolonged time