Cancer Home > Transitional Cell Carcinoma (of the Ureter and Renal Pelvis)

Transitional cell carcinoma of the ureter and renal pelvis is a disease in which cancer cells form in the renal pelvis and ureter. The exact cause of this type of cancer is unknown, but risk factors for the disease include cigarette smoking, misusing certain pain medications, and being exposed to certain dyes and chemicals. Common symptoms of transitional cell carcinoma of the ureter and renal pelvis may include blood in the urine, pain in the back that doesn't go away, and extreme tiredness. In most cases, the disease is treated using surgery.

Transitional Cell Carcinoma of the Ureter and Renal Pelvis: An Overview

Transitional cell carcinoma of the ureter and renal pelvis is a disease in which cancer cells form in the renal pelvis and ureter.

(A more common form of transitional cell carcinoma is bladder cancer. You can read more about this type of transitional cell carcinoma by going to the eMedTV article Bladder Cancer. Renal cell cancer is a more common type of kidney cancer. Click Kidney Cancer to learn more about renal cell carcinoma.)
 

Understanding the Kidneys, Renal Pelvis, and Ureter

The renal pelvis is part of the kidney. The ureter connects the kidneys to the bladder. The kidneys:
 
  • Are located on each side of the backbone, above the waist
  • Are about 5 inches long and 3 inches wide (in adults) and are shaped like a kidney bean
  • Clean the blood and produce urine to rid the body of waste.
 
The urine collects in the middle of each kidney in a large cavity called the renal pelvis. Urine drains from each kidney through a long tube called the ureter, into the bladder, where it is stored until it is passed from the body through the urethra.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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