Clinical features of kidney cancer in primary care: a case-control study using primary care records.
British Journal of General Practice
Royal College of General Practitioners
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Under indefinite embargo due to publisher policy. The final version is available from Royal College of General Practitioners via the DOI in this record.
BACKGROUND: Kidney cancer accounts for over 4000 UK deaths annually, and is one of the cancer sites with a poor mortality record compared with Europe. AIM: To identify and quantify all clinical features of kidney cancer in primary care. DESIGN: Case-control study, using General Practice Research Database records. METHOD: A total of 3149 patients aged ≥40 years, diagnosed with kidney cancer between 2000 and 2009, and 14 091 age, sex and practice-matched controls, were selected. Clinical features associated with kidney cancer were identified, and analysed using conditional logistic regression. Positive predictive values for features of kidney cancer were estimated. RESULTS: Cases consulted more frequently than controls in the year before diagnosis: median 16 consultations (interquartile range 10-25) versus 8 (4-15): P<0.001. Fifteen features were independently associated with kidney cancer: visible haematuria, odds ratio 37 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 28 to 49), abdominal pain 2.8 (95% CI = 2.4 to 3.4), microcytosis 2.6 (95% CI = 1.9 to 3.4), raised inflammatory markers 2.4 (95% CI = 2.1 to 2.8), thrombocytosis 2.2 (95% CI = 1.7 to 2.7), low haemoglobin 1.9 (95% CI = 1.6 to 2.2), urinary tract infection 1.8 (95% CI = 1.5 to 2.1), nausea 1.8 (95% CI = 1.4 to 2.3), raised creatinine 1.7 (95% CI = 1.5 to 2.0), leukocytosis 1.5 (95% CI = 1.2 to 1.9), fatigue 1.5 (95% CI = 1.2 to 1.9), constipation 1.4 (95% CI = 1.1 to 1.7), back pain 1.4 (95% CI = 1.2 to 1.7), abnormal liver function 1.3 (95% CI = 1.2 to 1.5), and raised blood sugar 1.2 (95% CI = 1.1 to 1.4). The positive predictive value for visible haematuria in patients aged ≥60 years was 1.0% (95% CI = 0.8 to 1.3). CONCLUSION: Visible haematuria is the commonest and most powerful single predictor of kidney cancer, and the risk rises when additional symptoms are present. When considered alongside the risk of bladder cancer, the overall risk of urinary tract cancer from haematuria warrants referral.
This study was funded by the NIHR Programme Grants for Applied Research funding scheme, RP-PG-0608-10045. William Hamilton was part-funded by a NIHR post-doctoral fellowship.
Vol. 63, No. 609, pp. e250 - e255
Place of publication