My stepson just found out he has a urachal cyst and his urologist told him it can become urachal cancer. Can a urachal cyst turn into urachal cancer? Would removing the cyst prevent him from getting the cancer?
Yes, a urachal cyst can become urachal cancer, but this is a rare occurrence. One research study showed that urachal cancer was not found in any children with urachal cysts; however, 25% of adults with urachal cysts were found to have urachal cancer. The authors of this study suggested that the longer the urachal cyst remained in the body, the greater the chance it could become cancerous.
Last updated: 5/5/2015
How might a urachal cyst be treated?
Treatment of a urachal cyst may depend on whether or not the person is experiencing any symptoms. Sometimes these cysts are not treated but are monitored, particularly if there are no symptoms. In some cases, the urachal abnormalities resolve on their own without treatment. Because there is a small risk that a urachal cyst may become cancerous, surgery may be performed to completely remove the urachus. You can talk to your doctor about the risk of the urachal cyst causing infection or developing into cancer and balancing that with the risks associated with surgical removal.
Last updated: 9/29/2017
We hope this information is helpful. We strongly recommend you discuss this information with your doctor. If you still have questions, please
Ashley RA, Inman BA, Routh JC, Rohlinger AL, Husmann DA, Kramer SA. Urachal anomalies: a longitudinal study of urachal remnants in children and adults. Journal of Urology. 2007; 178:1615-1618. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17707039. Accessed 10/13/2014.
Bagnara V, Antoci S, Bonforte S, Privitera G, Luca T, Castorina S. Clinical considerations, management and treatment of fever of unknown origin caused by urachal cyst: a case report. J Med Case Rep. March 2014; 8:106.