Signs And Symptoms Of Bladder Cancer
Sometimes bladder cancer doesnt have many symptoms. Signs or symptoms can include:
- blood in your urine
- pain or burning when passing urine
- not being able to pass urine when you need to.
Not everyone with these symptoms has bladder cancer. If you have any of these symptoms or are worried, always see your doctor.
Ask Your Doctor For A Referral To A Urologist
For women diagnosed with a UTI, Dr. Donat has this advice: Make sure your doctor sends a urine culture for testing, she says. If you did have a culture, make sure it came back positive to confirm that you actually have an infection. If the culture was negative or your bladder symptoms continue despite treatment, dont be afraid to ask your doctor for a referral to a urologist to get a formal evaluation.
Tests can sometimes distinguish the bleeding associated with bladder cancer from postmenopausal uterine bleeding, but the results are not always clear-cut. Your gynecologist can send a catheterized urine sample for testing to determine the source of the blood and to evaluate for gynecologic causes of the bleeding, Dr. Donat explains. If your gynecologic exam fails to identify the source of the bleeding or is inconclusive, or if your irritative bladder symptoms persist, you should also seek out the expertise of a urologist.
Hematuria may originate in the bladder or the kidneys, says Dr. Donat, so a urologist needs to check both. This is best done with a special CT scan of the urinary tract called a CT urogram and by looking in the bladder with a lighted telescope called a cystoscope. This procedure, called a cystoscopy, is usually done in an office in just a few minutes and does not require anesthesia, says Dr. Donat. A urine test called a cytology may also be sent to check for cancer cells in the urine.
Latest Bladder Cancer Data
Bladder cancer is the 10th most common cancer worldwide. It is the 6th most common cancer in men and the 17th most common cancer in women.
There were more than 573,000 new cases of bladder cancer in 2020.
The 10 countries with the highest rates of bladder cancer and the highest number of deaths from bladder cancer in 2020 are shown in the tables below.
ASR = age-standardised rates. These are a summary measure of the rate of disease that a population would have if it had a standard age structure. Standardisation is necessary when comparing populations that differ with respect to age because age has a powerful influence on the risk of dying from cancer.
You May Like: How To Get Rid Of Bladder Leakage
What Are The Treatment Options For Bladder Cancer
There are four types of treatment for patients with bladder cancer. These include:
Sometimes, combinations of these treatments will be used.
Surgery is a common treatment option for bladder cancer. The type of surgery chosen will depend on the stage of the cancer.
- Transurethral resection of the bladder is used most often for early stage disease . It is done under general or spinal anesthesia. In this procedure, a special telescope called a resectoscope is inserted through the urethra into the bladder. The tumor is then trimmed away with the resectoscope, using a wire loop, and the raw surface of the bladder is then fulgurated .
- Partial cystectomy is the removal of a section of the bladder. At times, it is used for a single tumor that invades the bladder wall in only one region of the bladder. This type of surgery retains most of the bladder. Chemotherapy or radiation therapy is often used in combination. Only a minority of patients will qualify for this bladder-sparing procedure.
- Radical cystectomy is complete removal of the bladder. It is used for more extensive cancers and those that have spread beyond the bladder .
This surgery is often done using a robot, which removes the bladder and any other surrounding organs. In men, this is the prostate and seminal vesicles. In women, the ovaries, uterus and a portion of the vagina may be removed along with the bladder.
What Causes Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer forms when the DNA in cells in the bladder mutate or change, disabling the functions that control cell growth. In many cases, these mutated cells die or are attacked by the immune system. But some mutated cells may escape the immune system and grow out of control, forming a tumor in the bladder.
While the exact cause of bladder cancer is not known, certain risk factors are linked to the disease, including tobacco smoking and exposure to certain chemicals and gases. Also, people with a family history of bladder cancer have a high risk of developing the disease.
Known risk factors for bladder cancer include:
Read Also: What Causes A Cyst On Your Bladder
Treatment For Stage 4 Bladder Cancer
Treatment for stage 4 bladder cancer may include:
- chemotherapy without surgery to relieve symptoms and extend life
- radical cystectomy and removal of the surrounding lymph nodes, followed by a surgery to create a new way for urine to exit the body
- chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and immunotherapy after surgery to kill remaining cancer cells or to relieve symptoms and extend life
- clinical trial drugs
, the five-year survival rates by stage are the following:
- The five-year survival rate for people with stage 0 bladder cancer is around 98 percent.
- The five-year survival rate for people with stage 1 bladder cancer is around 88 percent.
- The five-year survival rate for people with stage 2 bladder cancer is around 63 percent.
- The five-year survival rate for people with stage 3 bladder cancer is around 46 percent.
- The five-year survival rate for people with stage 4 bladder cancer is around 15 percent.
There are treatments available for all stages. Also, survival rates dont always tell the whole story and cant predict your future. Speak with your doctor about any questions or concerns you may have regarding your diagnosis and treatment.
Because doctors dont yet know what causes bladder cancer, it may not be preventable in all cases. The following factors and behaviors can reduce your risk of getting bladder cancer:
- not smoking
Evaluation For Metastatic Disease
Complete blood count, blood chemistry tests , liver function tests, chest radiography, and CT or magnetic resonance imaging of the abdomen and pelvis should be included in the metastatic workup for invasive bladder cancer.12 A bone scan may be performed if the alkaline phosphatase level is elevated or if symptoms suggesting bone metastasis are present.
Don’t Miss: Locally Advanced Bladder Cancer Stage
What Are The Symptoms Of Bladder Cancer
The most common symptom of bladder cancer is visible blood in the urine.1 Other common symptoms are frequent, urgent, or painful urination. These symptoms are not always caused by bladder cancer, but it is important to speak with your healthcare provider if you experience them. Treatment is typically more effective for bladder cancer when its in its earliest stages.
Chemotherapy Or Radiation Therapy
Taking the chemotherapy drug cyclophosphamide for a long time can irritate the bladder and increase the risk of bladder cancer. Those taking this drug are often told to drink plenty of fluids to help protect the bladder from irritation.
People who are treated with radiation to the pelvis are more likely to develop bladder cancer.
Read Also: Strongest Antibiotic For Bladder Infection
If You Have Any Concerns About Bladder Cancer Talk To Your Doctor About Cxbladder
Cxbladder is a cutting-edge genomic urine test that quickly and accurately detects or rules out bladder cancer. The test combines clinical risk factor markers with genetic information, measuring five biomarker genes to detect the presence or absence of bladder cancer in hematuria patients and those being monitored for recurrence.
Cxbladder comes as a suite of tests, each optimised for a different point in the patient journey:
- Cxbladder Triage: Incorporates known bladder cancer risk factors to help quickly rule out the disease.
- Cxbladder Detect: Designed to work alongside other tests to improve overall detection accuracy.
- Cxbladder Monitor: A non-invasive surveillance alternative that can reduce the need for frequent cystoscopies.
Cxbladder gives you peace of mind and will help your physician make informed treatment decisions.
Speak to your doctor or urologist to learn more about Cxbladder and which test might be right for you. You can also contact our Customer Service Team directly. Contact us for more information
Hereditary And Genetic Factors
While studies have failed to uncover major germline genetic players underlying sporadic bladder cancer, many genetic loci have been found via genome wide association studies to have a modest association with an increased susceptibility to bladder cancer . Among these are MYC, a cell-signaling molecule and common oncogene , NAT2, a slow acetylator which functions to detoxify aromatic amines , and GSTM1, an enzyme involved in the detoxification of other environmental carcinogens . The latter two also seem to have a synergistic carcinogenic interaction with tobacco smoking .
While bladder cancer is typically not considered as hereditary, certain cancer symptoms predispose ones risk to bladder cancer. One example is Cowdens syndrome, a hereditary defect in tumor-suppressor gene PTEN which predisposes to a wide variety of neoplasms, including transitional and squamous cell urothelial cancer . Another is Lynch syndrome, a defect in DNA mismatch repair typically associated with non-polyposis colorectal cancer, but which also increases the risk of bladder cancer . These patients are particularly good candidates for checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy .
Don’t Miss: Bladder Infection And Back Pain
What Are The Risk Factors For Bladder Cancer In Males
Several factors have been linked with an increased risk of developing bladder cancer, both in men and in women. Some of these include:
- Age: Bladder cancer predominantly affects older adults. In the United States, over 90% of people diagnosed with bladder cancer are 55 years and older.
- Race/Ethnicity: Bladder cancer risk varies by race and ethnicity, the causes of which remain unclear. In the United States, White men are approximately twice as likely to develop bladder cancer compared with men of other races. Similarly, the risk in non-Hispanic men is around double that of Hispanic men.
Certain Medicines Or Herbal Supplements
According to the US Food and Drug Administration , use of the diabetes medicine pioglitazone is linked with an increased risk of bladder cancer. The risk seems to get higher when higher doses are used.
Dietary supplements containing aristolochic acid have been linked with an increased risk of urothelial cancers, including bladder cancer.
Read Also: Does Macrobid Treat Bladder Infection
Prognosis And Survival Rates For Bladder Cancer
When someone is diagnosed with bladder cancer, their doctor will give them a prognosis. A prognosis is the doctors opinion of how likely the cancer will spread and the chances of getting better. A prognosis depends on the type and stage of cancer, as well as the persons age and general health.
Bladder cancer can usually be effectively treated if it is found before it spreads outside the bladder.
If you have bladder cancer, your doctor will talk to you about your individual situation when working out your prognosis. Every persons experience is different, and there is support available to you.
Treatment For Advanced Bladder Cancer
If bladder cancer has spread to other parts of the body, it is known as advanced or metastatic bladder cancer. You may be offered one or a combination of the following treatments to help control the cancer and ease symptoms:
- systemic chemotherapy
- radiation therapy.
Immunotherapy uses the bodys own immune system to fight cancer. BCG is a type of immunotherapy treatment that has been used for many years to treat non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer.
A new group of immunotherapy drugs called checkpoint inhibitors work by helping the immune system to recognise and attack the cancer. A checkpoint immunotherapy drug called pembrolizumab is now available in Australia for some people with urothelial cancer that has spread beyond the bladder. The drug is given directly into a vein through a drip, and the treatment may be repeated every 2 to 4 weeks for up to 2 years.
Other types of checkpoint immunotherapy drugs may become available soon.
You May Like: How To Strengthen Bladder Sphincter
Personal History Of Bladder Or Other Urothelial Cancer
Urothelial carcinomas can sometimes form in different areas in the bladder, as well as in the lining of the kidney, the ureters, and urethra. Having cancer in the lining of any part of the urinary tract puts you at higher risk of having another cancer, either in the same spot as before, or in another part of the urinary tract. This is true even when the first tumor is removed completely. For this reason, people who have had bladder cancer need careful follow-up to look for new cancers.
Certain Cancers Put Men At A Higher Risk
It’s hard to hear the news of a cancer diagnosis, but that’s what an estimated 970,250 men in the U.S. experienced in 2021. Besides skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men , followed by lung and colorectal cancers. It is lung cancer, however, that claims the most lives, causing 22% of all cancer deaths in men.
Thankfully, survival rates overall are improving, even for some difficult-to-treat cancers. Better treatments and early detectionespecially for colon cancerare saving lives. Still, for males, the average risk of developing cancer at some point in their lives is 40.5%, or nearly 1 in 2.
This article looks at the most common types of cancer in men, and the top causes of cancer death in men in the United States. It also looks at some of the things you need to know to lower your risk.
Bladder Reconstructions And Stomas
If you have had your bladder removed, the way you pass urine will change. There are several options that your treatment team will talk to you about:
- Urostomy is where doctors create a new hole in your abdomen called a stoma. Urine drains from the stoma to the outside of your abdomen into a special bag.
- Neobladder is where a new bladder made from your small bowel forms a pouch inside your body to store urine. You will pass urine by squeezing your abdominal muscles. You will also pass a small tube into the neobladder each day to help drain the urine.
- Continent urinary diversion is a pouch made from your small bowel inside your body to store urine. The urine empties through a hole called a stoma to the outside of your abdomen into a special bag.
A bladder reconstruction is a big change in your life. You can speak with a continence or stomal therapy nurse for help, support and information. You can also call Cancer Council . You may be able to speak with a trained Cancer Council volunteer who has had cancer for tips and support.
If you find it difficult to adjust after your bladder reconstruction, it may help to be referred to a psychologist or counsellor.
Note: If you have a stoma, you can join a stoma association for support and free supplies. For more information about stoma associations, visit the Australian Council of Stoma Associations.
Treating Stage Iii Bladder Cancer
These cancers have reached the outside of the bladder and might have grown into nearby tissues or organs and/or lymph nodes . They have not spread to distant parts of the body.
Transurethral resection is often done first to find out how far the cancer has grown into the bladder wall. Chemotherapy followed by radical cystectomy is then the standard treatment.Partial cystectomy is rarely an option for stage III cancers.
Chemotherapy before surgery can shrink the tumor, which may make surgery easier. Chemo can also kill any cancer cells that could already have spread to other areas of the body and help people live longer. It can be especially useful for T4 tumors, which have spread outside the bladder. When chemo is given first, surgery to remove the bladder is delayed. The delay is not a problem if the chemo shrinks the cancer, but it can be harmful if it continues to grow during chemo. Sometimes the chemo shrinks the tumor enough that intravesical therapy or chemo with radiation is possible instead of surgery.
Some patients get chemo after surgery to kill any cancer cells left after surgery that are too small to see. Chemo given after cystectomy may help patients stay cancer-free longer, but so far its not clear if it helps them live longer. If cancer is found in nearby lymph nodes, radiation may be needed after surgery. Another option is chemo, but only if it wasn’t given before surgery.
You May Like: Bladder And Prostate Cancer At The Same Time
What Is Bladder Cancer
The bladder is a hollow organ in the lower part of the abdomen that stores urine to be passed out of the body. The most common form of bladder cancer starts in cells within the innermost tissue layer of the bladder. When cancer in the lining of the bladder spreads to nearby organs and lymph nodes, it is considered invasive.
Bladder cancer is the fourth most common cancer in men and the eighth most common cancer in women. About 80,000 people in the United States are estimated to be diagnosed annually.
What Are The Survival Rates For Bladder Cancer In Males
It is important to emphasize that the outcomes for bladder cancer improve the earlier it is detected. For instance, while the overall 5-year survival rate for bladder cancer is 77%, the 5-year survival rate increases for disease that is at an earlier stage, being 96% for cancers that have not spread beyond the surface layer of the bladder .12
However, it is important to remember that each patient and cancer are different, so it is not possible to definitely know the disease course for an individual patient.
Read Also: How To Strengthen Your Bladder