When to approach your Urologist ?
Some commonly known symptoms:
- Pain in lower abdomen.
- Sudden weight loss.
- Urinary incontinence (frequent urination sensation)
- Blood in the urine.
- Early fatigue.
- Bone pain.
- Painful, burning sensation during urination
- Urge to urinate but no unableto pass urine.
Types of Bladder Cancer:
1) Urothelial or Transitional Cell Carcinoma:
The innermost lining of the bladder wall/ urinary tract is formed of these transitional cells, which can cause cancer due to their abnormal growth.
2) Squamous cell carcinoma:
Thin flat newly formed cells develop on the outer linings of bladder wall/ urinary tract in case of persistent inflammation/ irritation in the bladder.
Cancer cells initiate in the adrenal glands spread out to nearby organs.
All above cancers are further classified as:
- Papillary tumors: Attached to stalk and wart-like appearance. Most common.
- Nonpapillary (sessile) tumors: Flat appearance, uncommon, malignant.
Bladder Cancer Diagnosis:
- Urine cytology.
- CT scan
Stages & Treatment:
- Stage 0: Cancer cells limited to lining of bladder.
- Stage I: Cancer cells grown deep into lining of bladder.
- Surgery for tumor removal, without removing the rest of the bladder.
- Direct bladder- placed chemotherapy/ immunotherapy.
- Stage II: Cancer cells cross the lining and spread onto the muscular walls of the bladder.
- Stage III: Tumor has spread to any one of the following:
A nearby lymph node.
Nearby organs uterus, prostate, vagina causing abnormal kidney & bowel functions.
- Stage IV: Cancer cells spread out to other organs in the body like liver, lungs, bones.
- Recurrent cancer:
Reoccurance of cancers in kidney or any other part of the body, after treatment.
Treatment for Bladder Cancer:
Surgery: For removal of infected part of the bladder, post surgery chemotherapy/radiation. Removal of the entire bladder (radical cystectomy ), also nearby lymph nodes. Shrinking the tumor cells prior to surgery, using chemotherapy. Combine radiation and chemotherapy.
Stage IV: Mostly incurable, chemotherapy can be attempted.
Types of Bladder Cancer Surgery:
- Transurethral resection of the bladder (TURB).
- Radical cystectomy.
- Ileal conduit.
- Continent urinary reservoir.
- Orthotopic Neobladde.
At all above stages, treatments are finalized taking into consideration the overall health, severity, age and other ailments of the patient.