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Title: The relationship between renal tumor size and metastases in patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease.
Authors: Duffey BG,  Choyke PL,  Glenn G,  Grubb RL,  Venzon D,  Linehan WM,  Walther MM
Journal: J Urol
Date: 2004 Jul
Branches: CGB
PubMed ID: 15201738
PMC ID: not available
Abstract: PURPOSE: Patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease are at risk for multiple, bilateral, recurrent renal tumors and metastases. We previously evaluated the relationship between tumor size and metastases in families with hereditary renal cancer. We update our findings with about twice the number of patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Screening affected kindred or retrospective review of medical records identified 181 patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease and renal cell carcinoma. Patients with small tumors were followed with serial imaging until the largest tumor reached 3 cm, at which point surgery was recommended. Surgical resection was recommended to patients with tumors larger than 3 cm. Patients not undergoing screening often had large renal tumors. RESULTS: A total of 108 patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease and solid renal tumors on computerized tomography imaging smaller than 3 cm (group 1) were followed a mean of 58 months (range 0 to 244). Metastatic disease did not develop in any of these patients. Renal tumors larger than 3 cm developed in 73 patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease (group 2). Mean followup of group 2 was 72.9 months (range 0 to 321). The proportion of procedures that were nephron sparing was higher in group 1 than in group 2 (120 of 125 [97%] compared to 85 of 125 [69%], Fisher's exact test p <0.0001). Metastases developed in 20 of 73 (27.4%) patients in group 2. The frequency of renal tumor metastases increased with increasing tumor size. CONCLUSIONS: No renal tumor metastases were found in patients with renal tumors less than 3 cm in diameter. We advocate a 3 cm threshold for parenchymal sparing surgery in patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease to decrease the risk of metastatic disease while preserving renal function, avoiding or delaying the need for dialysis and/or renal transplant, and decreasing the number of operations which a patient may undergo. We stress the importance of early screening in the kindred of patients with von Hippel-Lindau disease and vigilant followup thereafter.