The link between kidney disease and cancer: complications and treatment

Lancet. 2020 Jul 25;396(10246):277-287. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30540-7.


Acute and chronic kidney disease encompasses a complex set of diseases that can both lead to, and result from, cancer. In particular, kidney disease can arise from the use of chemotherapeutic agents. Many of the current and newly developed cancer chemotherapeutic agents are nephrotoxic and can promote kidney dysfunction, which frequently manifests during the terminal stages of cancer. Given the link between kidney disease and cancer development and treatment, the aim of this Review is to highlight the importance of multidisciplinary collaboration between oncologists and nephrologists to predict and prevent chemotherapeutic-induced nephrotoxicity. As new therapies are introduced to treat cancer, new renal toxicities require proper diagnosis and management. We anticipate that multidisciplinary collaborations will lead to the development and implementation of guidelines for clinicians to improve the therapeutic management of patients with both cancer and renal impairment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Kidney Injury / chemically induced
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication
  • Kidney Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Kidney Diseases / pathology
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Nephrologists
  • Oncologists
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / complications*
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / epidemiology
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / physiopathology


  • Antineoplastic Agents