Bladder cancer care
Allina Health offers a complete range of holistic care aimed at preventing, detecting and treating bladder cancer.
What it is
Bladder cancer is a cancer that starts in the bladder, which is in the lower abdomen and it the body part that holds and releases urine.
Each year, almost 71,000 new cases of bladder cancer are diagnosed in the United States. The good news is that bladder cancer is highly treatable when diagnosed in early stages.
Bladder cancer often starts from the cells that line the inside of the bladder. In later stages, it can spread into the walls of the bladder, making it more difficult to treat.
Bladder cancer risk factors
- Smoking tobacco
- Age (over age 55)
- Whites have twice the risk as other races
- Men are up to four times as likely as women to get bladder cancer
- Personal history of bladder cancer
- Long-term exposure to certain chemicals, especially for the following professions:
- people who work in the rubber, chemical and leather industries
- machinists and metal workers
- textile workers
- truck drivers
- people who work at dry cleaning businesses
- History of parasitical infections
- Treatment with or exposure to cyclophosphamide or arsenic
- Chronic bladder problems
- History of taking a fangchi, a Chinese herb
- Having a kidney transplant
- Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer (also called Lynch syndrome)
Good to know
Symptoms of bladder cancer can include:
- abdominal pain
- blood in the urine
- bone pain or tenderness, if the cancer spreads to the bone
- painful urination
- urinary frequency and urgency
- urine leakage (incontinence)
- weight loss.
Other diseases and conditions can cause similar symptoms. It is important to see your health care provider to rule out all other possible causes.
Diagnosis and treatment
Your doctor will perform a physical examination, including a rectal and pelvic exam.
Other tests that may be done, include:
- abdominal and pelvic CT scan
- abdominal MRI scan
- cystoscopy (examining the inside of the bladder with a camera), with biopsy
- intravenous pyelogram - IVP
- urine cytology.
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans
- PET (positron emission tomography) scans
- intravenous pyelogram: A dye is injected, which then travels through the urinary system and shows up on an X-ray
- bone scan
- chest X-ray
- CT urogram
Your cancer care team will work with you to develop your cancer treatment plan. The plan is unique to your medical diagnosis, pathology and preferences. Your plan could include any of these cancer treatment options:
Source: Allina Health Cancer Care
Reviewed by: Allina Health Cancer care
First published: 10/11/2019
Last reviewed: 10/11/2019