What is bladder cancer ? Symptoms complications and treatment

What is bladder cancer ? Symptoms complications and treatment

What is bladder cancer ?
What is bladder cancer ? 


Bladder cancer is the fourth tumor in terms of prevalence. In about 80% of patients, a superficial tumor is discovered that does not penetrate the muscles of the bladder, while in 20%, bladder cancer is detected in advanced stages.

Despite treatment of bladder cancer, the superficial tumor tends to recur after many years during which no evidence of bladder cancer has been shown. The development from a superficial disease to an advanced disease depends on the stage of the disease and the degree of differentiation.


*** Types of Bladder Cancer

The source of most bladder tumors in developed countries is from the transitional epithelium, that is, transitional cell carcinoma, and the rest is of the squamous cell type, and its percentage is greater in cases related to chronic itching in the bladder or due to a parasite Schistosoma, and in rare cases, the tumor is an adenocarcinoma.


*** Stages of Bladder Cancer

The stage of bladder cancer is determined by the degree of penetration of the tumor into the bladder wall, which is as follows:


  • A papillary tumor is confined to the epithelium and does not penetrate the lamina propria.
  • Carcinoma in situ is a flat tumor that infiltrates through the mucosa and resides beneath the healthy mucosal layer, so it often cannot be detected and completely removed.
  • Tumor that penetrates the lamina propria but does not penetrate the bladder muscle.
  • A tumor that penetrates the inner half of the detrusor muscle.
  • A tumor that penetrates the outer half of the detrusor muscle.
  • Tumor penetrates the fatty layer around the blood vessels.
  • A tumor that penetrates the pelvic organs or pelvic wall.
  • There is also a microscopic classification of degrees of differentiation starting from 1 i.e. low to 3 i.e. high, the combination of these two grading enables a prediction of the clinical course of the disease.


*** Symptoms of Bladder Cancer

The most common clinical symptoms of bladder cancer are:


  • Seeing bleeding from the urinary tract.
  • Occult bleeding that is detected only with a laboratory examination of the urine.
  • Pain in the waist due to obstruction of the ureter area due to a swollen bladder.
  • Frequency, urgency and pain with urination due to swelling of the bladder wall filter.
  • Tumor surrounding the neck of the bladder and ureter.


*** Causes and risk factors of bladder cancer

Bladder cancer risk factors include:


  • sex.
  • the age.
  • smoking.
  • Exposure to carcinogens.
  • Exposure to antitumor drugs.
  • Exposure to arsenic (Arsenic).
  • Chronic inflammation due to bladder stones or due to the schistosomiasis parasite.


*** Complications of Bladder Cancer

Complications include the following:


  • Anemia.
  • swelling of the ureter;
  • Urethral stricture.
  • incontinence.
  • Erectile dysfunction in men.
  • Impotence in women.


*** Diagnosis of bladder cancer

Bladder cancer is diagnosed by CT scan, endoscopy, or ultrasound.

The necessary tests for this are computerized tomography (CT) of the abdomen and pelvis, chest imaging, bone scan, blood tests for liver function, or alkaline phosphatase examination.


*** Bladder Cancer Treatment

If the tumor has not penetrated the muscle and has been completely removed and the patient does not face risk factors for tumor recurrence, the patient is sent to complete medical follow-up, but if there are risk factors for tumor recurrence, the patient should be suggested to conduct complementary treatment with chemotherapy or immunotherapy for the bladder, in addition to the weekly protocols for a period of 6 - 8 weeks to ensure the prevention of tumor recurrence, as there are protocols for maintenance treatments that continue for several years after excision.

In recent years, other therapies have been added, such as gemcitabine, or synergos technologies that combine chemotherapy and heating.

In the event of a diagnosis of a disease that penetrates the bladder muscle, a radical cystectomy must be performed. In this surgery, the prostate and seminal vesicles are removed in men, while in women, the uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries and the front part of the vagina are removed.

While the prognosis for patients with superficial MTCC is good, the clinical course of invasive disease in many cases is associated with the development of metastases.

There is evidence that cisplatin-based chemotherapy, especially when given prior to surgery, may improve prognosis, and this combination chemotherapy is also the treatment of choice for patients diagnosed with metastases who do not need surgery.


***Prevention of bladder cancer

The disease can be prevented by:


  • Non-smoking.
  • Limit exposure to certain chemicals in the workplace.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.

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