Purpose: We analyzed the presentation, treatment and survival of 4 children with renal cell carcinoma. Materials and Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the pathological and hospital records of 4 Japanese children diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma at our hospital from 1970 to 1998. Results: In the 1 boy and 3 girls with an average age of 8 years 7 months at diagnosis the most common presenting complaints were gross hematuria in 75% and a palpable abdominal mass in 50%. Computerized tomography revealed characteristic calcification within the tumor in 3 of the 4 patients (75%). In the remaining case the lesion had high density areas with microcalcification, as confirmed by histopathological study. In 2 patients with regional lymph node metastasis calcification was also observed in the metastatic lesions. Disease was stages I to III in 1, 1 and 2 patients, respectively. All patients underwent transabdominal nephrectomy with regional lymphadenectomy. One patient with stage I disease had multiple metastases 15 months later and died of disease 55 months postoperatively. However, the remaining 3 patients received adjuvant interferon therapy and they are without evidence of recurrence a mean of 51.3 months postoperatively. Conclusions: Calcification within the tumor and/or metastatic lesions or high density areas in the tumor on screening computerized tomography are characteristic findings suggestive of pediatric renal cell carcinoma. Adjuvant therapy with interferon may provide some benefit in select pediatric patients. Further studies of a larger number of pediatric renal cell carcinoma cases may be necessary to establish the optimal diagnostic and therapeutic regimen.
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