Author: Dena Battle

Kidney Cancer Patient Stories – March 2021

In 2009, my husband Chris was diagnosed with kidney cancer. What started as a suspected case of appendicitis turned out to be renal cell carcinoma. We felt blindsided, unable to make rational decisions, forced to aimlessly follow whatever the doctors told us. What changed things for us was when we started sharing our story through our blog and connecting with other patients dealing with the same d...

Am I Cured?

This is a common question that pops up in our kidney cancer communities. And it’s not surprising. Seventy-five percent of kidney cancer patients will be diagnosed with localized disease. The majority of these patients are “cured” by surgery, however between 20 and 40 percent will experience a recurrence of their cancer. Following surgery, many patients struggle with how to describe this situation ...

Biopsy for Kidney Cancer – Communicating Changes in Practice

One question that is routinely posted in our kidney cancer patient communities is: should I have a biopsy of my kidney tumor? The resounding chorus from others is almost always an emphatic: “NO! “it’s too dangerous” “you’ll spread the cancer.” For more than two decades, the use of biopsy in managing renal cell carcinoma has been shifting dramatically. Advances in cytological techniques as well as ...

Remembering Laura Loughlin

The world has lost a remarkable voice for kidney cancer. Laura Loughlin, KCCure’s Director of Patient Engagement, died from her disease on March 27th. After her diagnosis with advanced disease, Laura found comfort in connecting with other patients and wrote about how supporting others gave her a new purpose and meaning. She was one of the first people I reached out to when we began building ...

Fear of Cancer Recurrence

In 2009, at the age of 40, my husband Chris, went to the emergency room for what we thought was appendicitis, only to have a CT scan reveal a massive tumor on his kidney.   The next few days were a blur. Chris was just propelled forward like a car on an assembly line – we weren’t so much consulted, just politely informed of what was coming next. Four days later, following a radical nephr...


Six months before he died, my husband Chris watched a documentary about La Sagrada Familia, a basilica in Barcelona, Spain. He became fascinated with the project and told me how much he wanted to see it in person.  Begun in 1882, La Sagrada Familia has been under construction for more than a century. When architect Antoni Gaudi first designed the project, he knew it would never be comple...

What’s your Kidney Cancer Song?

Driving the long trip from DC to our Kidney Cancer Patient Meeting in Chapel Hill, North Carolina last week, a song from Pink came on the radio: Walk me home in the dead of night I can’t be alone with all that’s on my mind, So say you’ll stay with me tonight ‘Cause there is so much wrong going on outside I couldn’t help but think about Kidney Cancer Awareness Month and the ...

Kidney Cancer Awareness Month

During Kidney Cancer Awareness Month, visit us at KCCure each day, where we’ll share a new story from someone whose life has been touched by kidney cancer. We share Kidney Cancer Patient Stories to let others know that they’re not alone. One day, after talking to a kidney cancer patient on the phone, my daughter Josie asked me what we had been talking about. I said, “He has cancer, and...

Kidney Cancer Patient Communities Matter

If you or someone you care for has been diagnosed with kidney cancer, we encourage you to seek out help from others from any one of the amazing kidney cancer patient communities that exist.  Whether you have stage 1 disease or stage 4 disease, there is a place of comfort for you. You are not alone!

Kidney Cancer Awareness Month

Each day in March, visit us at KCCure, where we’ll share a new story from someone whose life has been touched by kidney cancer. We share Kidney Cancer Patient Stories to let others know that they're not alone.

New first line standard of care treatment for Stage 4 RCC

New data from the pivotal phase 3 Checkmate 214 trial combining ipilumimab and nivolumab presented at the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) conference in Madrid showed superiority for the combination over Sunitinib (Sutent). This data will likely mean that the IO combination will move to approval for first line stage 4 RCC therapy.

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