We can quickly test for this common cancer, and if we find it, we have many aggressive treatment options.
- Blood in the urine
- Pain during urination
- Urinating small amounts, frequently
- Frequent UTIs
Bladder cancer is one of the most common cancers in the United States. This type of cancer develops as an abnormal growth of cells on the lining of the urinary bladder. While the cause of bladder cancer is not always known, it’s three times more likely to develop in smokers.
To check for the possibility of bladder cancer, a urologist will look into the bladder with a small scope (cystoscopy). With minimal discomfort, a small, flexible scope is inserted in the urinary channel and guided into the bladder. Often, this can be done in the office setting with minimal local anesthesia. The tumors are very easy to identify by looking at the lining of the bladder. Any suspicious growth in the bladder will be recommended for biopsy. Biopsy has to be done in a surgery center or hospital under full anesthesia. In addition to these tests, CT scans can be used to see if bladder cancer has spread to any other organs in the body. PET scans can also be used to assess for any spread of bladder cancer.
The treatment of bladder cancer depends on a number of factors: how large the cancer is, how invasive it is, and how far it has spread. Bladder cancer is curable if it’s diagnosed while the cancer is still contained in the bladder, and more than 80% of bladder cancers are diagnosed at this early stage
Current treatments include:
- Intravesical therapy
- Radiation Therapy
- Urinary diversions and reconstructions