If kidney cancer spreads

Cancer cells can spread from the kidney to other parts of the body. This spread is called metastasis.

Understanding how a type of cancer usually grows and spreads helps your healthcare team plan your treatment and future care. If kidney cancer spreads, it can spread to the following:

  • lymph nodes around the kidney
  • the main vein in the kidney (called the renal vein)
  • the large vein in the abdomen leading to the heart (called the vena cava)
  • the other kidney
  • adrenal glands
  • lung
  • liver
  • bone
  • brain

Expert review and references