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Advances in Urology
Volume 2008, Article ID 196701, 6 pages
Review Article

Surveillance for the Management of Small Renal Masses

Department of Urology, Medical University of Vienna, Währinger Gürtel 18-20, 1090 Vienna, Austria

Received 16 April 2008; Accepted 8 June 2008

Academic Editor: J. Rubio

Copyright © 2008 Mehmet Ozsoy et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Surveillance is a new management option for small renal masses (SRMs) in aged and infirm patients with short-life expectancy. The current literature on surveillance of SRM contains mostly small, retrospective studies with limited data. Imaging alone is inadequate for suggesting the aggressive potential of SRM for both diagnosis and followup. Current data suggest that a computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) every 3 months in the 1st year, every 6 months in the next 2 years, and every year thereafter, is appropriate for observation. The authors rather believe in active surveillance with mandatory initial and followup renal tumor biopsies than classical observation. Since not all SRMs are harmless, selection criteria for active surveillance need to be improved. In addition, there is need for larger studies in order to better outline oncological outcome and followup protocols.