How Common Is Bladder Cancer
The American Cancer Societys estimates for bladder cancer in the United States for 2021 are:
- About 83,730 new cases of bladder cancer
- About 17,200 deaths from bladder cancer
The rates of new bladder cancers and deaths linked to bladder cancer and have been dropping slightly in women in recent years. In men, incidence rates have been decreasing, but death rates have been stable.
Bladder cancer is the fourth most common cancer in men, but it’s less common in women.
What Is Stage 4 Bladder Cancer
Being diagnosed with bladder cancer can be overwhelming, especially if its stage 4.
Stage 4 bladder cancer is the most advanced stage and carries the worst prognosis. Many cancer treatments will be both difficult and challenging.
However, treatment can reduce or even eliminate your symptoms and help you live a longer, more comfortable life.
Its important to consider the pros and cons of treating stage 4 bladder cancer because treatments come with side effects and risks.
Symptoms of bladder cancer can include:
- blood or blood clots in your urine
- pain or burning during urination
- frequent urination
- needing to urinate at night
- needing to urinate but not being able to
- lower back pain on one side of the body
These symptoms commonly lead to a diagnosis, but they arent unique to stage 4 bladder cancer.
Stage 4 bladder cancer is also called metastatic bladder cancer. This means the cancer has spread outside of the bladder into other parts of the body.
People with metastatic cancer may experience symptoms relating to where the cancer has spread. For example, if a persons bladder cancer has spread to their lungs, they may experience chest pain or increased coughing.
Metastatic bladder cancer is difficult to cure because it has already traveled to other parts of the body. The later youre diagnosed and the farther the cancer has traveled, the less chance that your cancer will be cured.
The 5-year survival rate is the rate of surviving for 5 years after a cancer diagnosis.
The Truth Behind Bladder Cancer Statistics
The bladder cancer survival rates that can be found online only display results from recent cases. Large numbers of patient outcomes are recorded to give a general idea of how successful cancer treatment can be. These statistics are not guaranteed or binding to a specific individual. Survival rates reflect your cancers response to treatment while also taking your age and general health into consideration. These accessory factors will help determine how receptive your body will be to treatment. They wont tell exactly how successful your treatment will be, but it helps to see how often bladder cancer can be eradicated.
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Side Effects Of Treatment For Bladder Cancer
All cancer treatments can have side effects. Your treatment team will discuss these with you before you start treatment. Talk to your doctor or nurse about any side effects you are experiencing. Some side effects can be upsetting and difficult, but there is help if you need it. Call Cancer Council or email to speak with a caring cancer nurse for support.
Bladder Cancer Survival Trends Over Time
Bladder cancer survival trends are difficult to interpret because of changes to classification and coding practices affecting the definition of invasive carcinoma of the bladder.The decrease in bladder cancer survival since the 1990s is likely to be due to an increasing proportion of bladder tumours now being coded as in situ or uncertain.
One-year age-standardised net survival for bladder cancer in men has increased from 63% during 1971-1972 to 80% during 1990-1991 and then decreased to 77% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales. In women, one-year survival has increased from 53% to 70% and then decreased to 62% over the same time periods.
Bladder Cancer , Age-Standardised One-Year Net Survival, Adults , England and Wales, 1971-2011
Five-year age-standardised net survival for bladder cancer in men has increased from 41% during 1971-1972 to 63% during 1990-1991 and then decreased to a predicted survival of 57% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales. In women, five-year survival has increased from 35% to 55% and then decreased to 46% over the same time periods.
Bladder Cancer , Age-Standardised Five-Year Net Survival, Adults , England and Wales, 1971-2011
Five-year survival for 2010-2011 is predicted using an excess hazard statistical model
Bladder Cancer , Age-Standardised Ten-Year Net Survival, Adults , England and Wales, 1971-2011
Ten-year survival for 2005-2006 and 2010-2011 is predicted using an excess hazard statistical model
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Cancer Survival Rates Dont Inform The Whole Story
Survival rates are often based on previous outcomes of large numbers of individuals who had the disease, but they cannot anticipate exactly what will take place in any particular persons case. There are a variety of limitations to keep in mind:
- The numbers below are among the most existing readily available. However to obtain 5-year survival rates, doctors have to look at individuals who were alleviated at least 5 years ago. As treatments are enhancing in time, people who are now being detected with bladder cancer might have a much better outlook than these data reveal.
- These data are based on the stage of the cancer when it was first identified. They do not apply to cancers that later on returned or spread, for example.
- The outlook for people with bladder cancer varies by the stage of the cancer in general, the survival rates are greater for people with earlier phase cancers. But many other aspects can impact an individuals outlook, such as age and general health, and how well the cancer reacts to treatment. The outlook for each person is specific to their conditions.
Your physician can tell you how these numbers may use to you, as she or he recognizes with your certain scenario.
Tests For Bladder Cancer
Your doctor may do some tests to check for bladder cancer:
- internal examination the doctor may check inside your bottom or vagina with their finger, using gloves
- urine tests your urine will be checked for signs of bladder cancer
- blood tests to check your general health
- ultrasound a scan on the outside of your abdomen to check for cancer
- cystoscopy the doctor puts a small camera into your bladder to see inside
- biopsy the doctor takes a small sample of the cells from the bladder to check for signs of cancer.
Your doctor might ask you to have further tests. These can include:
- CT scan and x-rays scans that take pictures of the inside of the body, sometimes also called a CT-IVP or a triple phase abdominal-pelvic CT scan
- MRI scan a scan that uses magnetism and radio waves to take pictures of the inside of the body
- bone scan a scan that uses dye to show changes in your bones
- FDG-PET scan a scan that uses an injection of liquid to show cancer cells.
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Treatment For Bladder Cancer
Treatment for bladder cancer depends on how quickly the cancer is growing. Treatment is different for non-muscle invasive bladder cancer and muscle-invasive bladder cancer. You might feel confused or unsure about your treatment options and decisions. Its okay to ask your treatment team to explain the information to you more than once. Its often okay to take some time to think about your decisions.
What Goes Into A Prognosis
When figuring out your prognosis, your healthcare provider will consider all the things that could affect the cancer and its treatment. He or she will look at risk estimates about the exact type and stage of the cancer you have. These estimates are based on what results researchers have seen over many years in thousands of people with the same type and stage of cancer.
If your cancer is likely to respond well to treatment, your healthcare provider will say you have a favorable prognosis. This means youre expected to live many years and may even be cured. If your cancer is likely to be hard to control, your prognosis may be less favorable. The cancer may shorten your life. Its important to keep in mind that a prognosis states whats likely or probable. It’s not a prediction of what will definitely happen. No healthcare provider can be fully certain about an outcome.
Your prognosis depends mainly on:
The type and location of the cancer
The stage of the cancer
Your overall health
Your treatment decisions
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What Factors Govern The Survival Rate And Prognosis Of Bladder Cancer In An Individual Case
Survival rates in case of an individual depend on various factors, including:
- The type of cancer
- Stage of the bladder cancer at the time of diagnosis
- Whether the cancer has grown to other organs or parts of the body. If the tumor has not yet spread outside the bladder, the 5-year survival rate is quite good .
- If the cancer has spread through the bladder to the surrounding tissue or to nearby lymph nodes or organs, the 5-year survival rate is about 30%.
- If the cancer has spread to distant organs of the body, the 5-year survival rate is much less about 5%.
- The treatment that you are given by your healthcare provider. Not everyone is given the same treatment. Treatment depends on several factors such as your overall condition, stage, other diseases, age etc.
- Sex: Survival for women is generally found lower according to statistics.
- Age: According to estimates, the five-year survival rate for bladder cancer has been found higher in people and decreases as the age increases.
It is important to know that these survival rates are only based on certain estimates. They are not accurate numbers and cant predict what will happen in your case. In order to understand about your specific case as an individual, you should talk to your doctor as he understands your condition and the treatment you are going through to inform you about the life expectancy.
Symptoms In Men And Women
Bladder cancer symptoms in men and women are the same. Men are more likely to get bladder cancer, but they are also more likely to have it diagnosed earlier, according to Moffitt Cancer Center.
Women are more likely to mistake bladder cancer symptoms for urinary tract infections or menstruation.
Rarely, bladder cancer may also be misdiagnosed as interstitial cystitis in women. IC is a painful, inflammatory bladder condition that affects more women than men.
In one study, doctors found bladder cancer in about one percent out of 600 patients referred to them for IC treatment, according to an article in Urology Times.
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Causes And Risk Factors
Researchers dont know exactly what causes bladder cancer, but they do know what increases the risk of getting it. These risk factors range from family history to certain types of medication.
Data published in 2021 on MedRxiv by researchers from the online pharmacy Valisure and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center showed patients who took Zantac had elevated diagnosis rates of bladder, breast, prostate and thyroid cancer.
Patients should keep in mind that this data suggests a link between ranitidine and increased risk, but it doesnt prove that all people who take ranitidine will get bladder cancer.
Latest Treatment For Bladder Cancer
Intravesical therapy is a newer treatment for people who have bladder cancer. With intravesical therapy, the doctor puts a liquid medication right into your bladder rather than administering it orally or injecting it into your blood. The medication is put in through a catheter thats placed into your bladder through the urethra. The medication stays in your bladder for up to two hours, so it can affect the cells lining the inside of the bladder without having major effects on other parts of your body. Intravesical therapy is commonly used after transurethral resection of bladder tumor . Its often performed within 24 hours of the TURBT procedure. The goal is to kill any cancer cells that may be left in the bladder.
Intravesical chemotherapy is used to treat non-invasive bladder cancer. It is used for these early-stage cancers because medication given this way mostly affects the cells lining the inside of the bladder. It has little to no effect on cells elsewhere. This means any cancer cells outside of the bladder lining are not treated by intravesical chemotherapy.
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What Affects Survival
Your outlook depends on the stage of the cancer when it is diagnosed. This means whether the cancer is just in the bladder lining or whether it has spread into the muscle wall of the bladder or beyond.
The type of bladder cancer can affect your likely survival. And the grade of the cancer may also be important. Grade means how abnormal the cells look under the microscope.
Most bladder cancers are diagnosed when they are still only in the bladder lining. These are called early bladder cancers. The outlook for early bladder cancers depend on several factors, including:
- exactly how far the cancer cells have gone into the bladder lining
- the number of tumours
- how wide the tumours are
- how abnormal the cancer cells look under the microscope
- whether CIS is present
- whether this a recurrence and how often a tumour has recurred
Your doctor looks at all these factors. They use them to decide whether there is a low, medium or high risk of the cancer coming back or spreading into the muscle of the bladder. Your doctor will be able to tell you about your risk group and how this affects your outcome.
What Are The 5
In 2020, approximately 17,980 deaths in the United States are predicted to be attributed to bladder cancer1. This represents the eighth most common cause of cancer deaths in men.
The general 5-year survival rate for people with bladder cancer is 77%, while the 10-year survival rate is 70% and the 15-year survival rate is 65%1. Notably, as each patient and cancer are different, it is not possible to definitely know the disease course for an individual patient.
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Types Of Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer can be described based on where it is found:
- non-muscle invasive the cancer has not spread to other layers of the bladder or muscle
- muscle-invasive the cancer has spread to other layers of the bladder, muscle or other parts of the body.
There are 3 main types of bladder cancer:
- urothelial carcinoma 80 to 90% of bladder cancers sometimes called transitional cell carcinoma
- squamous cell carcinoma 1 to 2% of all bladder cancers. It is more likely to be invasive
- adenocarcinoma 1 to 2% of all bladder cancers. It is more likely to be invasive .
There are other, less common types of bladder cancer. Treatment for these may be different. Speak to your doctor or nurse for information about these types of cancer.
What Are The Risks Of Bladder Cancer
No single factor is directly connected to bladder cancer, but factors that can increase the risk include:
- Age: Bladder cancer typically affects people age 55 and older.
- Smoking: Carcinogens from tobacco smoke come in contact with the lining of the bladder. Smokers are three times as likely as non-smokers to get bladder cancer.
- Family history: There is evidence that bladder cancer may have a genetic component.
- Industrial chemicals: Chemicals known as aromatic amines are often used in the dye industry. Workers who have daily exposure to them, such as painters, machinists and hairdressers, may be at a higher risk for bladder cancer.
- Drinking contaminated water: This includes water that has been treated with chlorine or drinking water with a naturally high level of arsenic, which occurs in many rural communities in the United States,.
- Taking certain herb: Supplements such as Aristolochia fangchi, a Chinese herb, sometimes used for weight loss has been linked to higher rates of bladder cancer.
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Bladder Cancer Survival Rates According To Stage Of Bladder Cancer
- The 5-year relative survival rate for stage 0 bladder cancer is about 98%
- The 5-year relative survival rate for people who have stage I bladder cancer is about 88%
- The 5-year relative survival rate for people with stage II bladder cancer is about 63%.
- The 5-year relative survival rate for stage III bladder cancer is about 46%.
- Stage IV bladder cancer has a relative 5-year survival rate of about 15%. Bladder cancer that has spread to other parts of the body cannot be treated. However, there are treatment options to relieve the symptoms and help the patient feel better.
Living With Advanced Cancer
Advanced cancer usually means cancer that is unlikely to be cured. Some people can live for many months or years with advanced cancer. During this time palliative care services can help.
Most people continue to have treatment for advanced cancer as part of palliative care, as it helps manage the cancer and improve their day-to-day lives. Many people think that palliative care is for people who are dying but palliative care is for any stage of advanced cancer. There are doctors, nurses and other people who specialise in palliative care.
Treatment may include chemotherapy, radiation therapy or another type of treatment. It can help in these ways:
- slow down how fast the cancer is growing
- shrink the cancer
- help you to live more comfortably by managing symptoms, like pain.
Treatment depends on:
- how far it has spread
- your general health
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How Is Bladder Cancer Diagnosed
Several different diagnostic tests and procedures may be used to detect bladder cancer, often in combination. They are selected based on a patients symptoms and risk factors and may include:
- Urinalysis: a quick test used to detect blood and other substances in urine.
- Urine cytology: urine is examined microscopically to see if cancer cells are present.
- Genomic urine tests: non-invasive molecular tests, such as Cxbladder, which measure gene expression to detect or rule out bladder cancer.
- Cystoscopy: a thin, flexible tube with a light and camera is inserted into the bladder through the urethra. If an abnormal area is seen, a small sample of tissue is usually collected for laboratory examination.
- Imaging: several types of imaging test can be used to visualize the inside of the body, such as ultrasound, CT scan, MRI scan, and x-ray.