Patients diagnosed with a rare kidney cancer are often treated the same way as clear-cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) patients, despite little evidence from randomised trials. Identifying the subtype of kidney cancer by looking at the genetic make-up of tumour cells to group patients by rare kidney cancer subtype may improve outcomes. Availability of potential treatments and trials remain a problem. Collaboration among medical centres is important to pool data from these rare kidney cancers.

This review by the European Association of Urology (EAU) Renal Cell Carcinoma Guideline Panel, published in European Urology last month, looks at treatment options for patients with advanced non-clear cell renal cell carcinomas (RCCs), and showed a substantial lack of evidence for management recommendations. The authors conclude that there is a need for additional multicentre studies and subtype-specific analyses; however, they present management recommendations based on data available at the time of the review. They also recommend kidney cancer subtype-specific global registries and shared research resources to help generate sufficient data to formulate evidence-based recommendations for guidelines.

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