Renal or kidney cancer can be deadly if untreated and yet it is also often difficult to diagnose due to the location of the kidneys in the body and the fact that such tumors can become quite large without causing significant symptoms.
Renal cell carcinomas are often found when other health problems are suspected and imaging shows them despite their not producing symptoms. Such fortuitous discovery of kidney neoplasms often provide an early warning of their presence prior to either localized or distant metastasis.
Unfortunately, there are occasions where diagnosticians are so focused on their suspected differential diagnoses, that they fail to either note the presence of an early stage kidney tumor or fail to emphasize the prospective diagnostic importance of these incidental findings.
Sadly in one case handled by Robert Clark an incidental finding of an encapsulated tumor was not disclosed to the patient and years later when she started exhibiting symptoms, the cancer had metastasized elsewhere in her body, resulting in her demise.
Her family was compensated through a medical negligence lawsuit but there was no way to compensate for her passing.