The speed of your recovery depends on your treatment. A minimally invasive approach (less injury to the body) will lead to a quicker recovery. The best treatment is often the one that offers the best long-term outcome. If your surgeon removed one kidney and the remaining kidney works well, you should enjoy a good quality of life and health. One good kidney can usually do the work of two.
After treatment you will need continued checkups to watch for a re-growth of cancer. After treatment, your doctor will perform many of the same tests used to diagnose the cancer. These visits and tests should continue at least yearly throughout your life.
Protecting Your Kidney after Surgery
If the surgery leaves you with only one kidney, you should avoid a few things. For example, avoid major contact sports (e.g., football, karate or boxing), or NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, e.g., aspirin and ibuprofen). In rare cases, these drugs can cause kidney damage. Depending on how well your kidney functions, you may need to avoid dyes used in some imaging tests. You may also want to limit the salt and protein in your diet. Your urologist may recommend you see a Nephrologist for monitoring your kidney function after surgery.
Treating problems like high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and obesity, can help prevent future kidney damage.