Management of Urological Cancers During Pregnancy

Urological cancers during pregnancy pose many challenges for clinicians. As these tumors are very rare among pregnant women and their symptoms might mimic those of common pregnancy-related disorders, the diagnosis is often delayed. Once a urological tumor is diagnosed in a pregnant patient, appropriate steps should be taken to treat her and the fetus at the same time. A delay in treatment can risk the mother's life whereas an early treatment can risk the life of the fetus. Common urological cancers that might occur during pregnancy include renal cancer, bladder cancer and adrenal tumors, particularly pheochromocytoma. Ultrasonography and MRI, which use no ionizing radiation, are considered to be safe during pregnancy. Surgical intervention is safest if performed during the second trimester. The treatment outcomes of these cancers in pregnant women are no different from those in the general population. Early suspicion and timely intervention are crucial for successful treatment.

Makarand V Khochikar, Department of Uro-oncology, Siddhi Vinayak Ganapati Cancer Hospital, Miraj (416410), Maharashtra State, India

Khochikar M. Management of urological cancers during pregnancy. Nat Rev Urol. 2010;7(4):195-205.