Signs and Symptoms of Bladder Cancer

By now you likely know that cancer, or malignant neoplasm, can affect any part of the body. By definition, cancer occurs when otherwise healthy cells multiply at an abnormal and almost unstoppable rate, overtaking neighboring tissues and organs, and traveling through the lymph system to affect other parts of the body.

To this day, cancer is an uncomfortable topic for most people; suddenheless, more people are diagnosed and die annually. Cancer develops as a result of exposure to toxins such as pollution or radiation or as the result of poor life choices such as smoking and poor diets. And despite great medical advances in treating cancer, it remains a leading cause of death.

The bladder is the fifth most common area to be afflicted with cancer. There are five common symptoms associated with bladder cancer that you should know.

1. Urine tinged with blood.

2. Pain in the bladder area.

3. Feeling an urge to urinate but being unable to do so.

4. Feeling a burning sensation when urinating.

5. Being unable to hold a normal amount of urine.

Of course the symptoms could have been caused by other ailments, but if you experience any of the above problems, you should consult with your physician as soon as possible. Your medical professional can order a number of tests to determine the root of the symptoms.

Your doctor will likely first check for blood in the urine. Usually, a physician will use a microscope to see red blood cells in the urine; sometimes the blood will be visible without a microscope.

An intravenous pyelogram, or IVP, is a test delivered to screen for tumors or abnormalities in the bladder. During an IVP, an iodine dye is injected into the body and the bladder is scanner with an x-ray.

A cystoscope, a small lighted tube, inserted into the bladder through the urethra can be used to look for growths or abnormal tissues.

And if an abnormality is detected, your doctor will want to use a CT scan to see if the cancer has spread.

Treatment options for people with bladder cancer vary dependent on the stage of the cancer, the patient's age and overall health. Typical treatment options include chemotherapy and radiation, surgery for tumor removal and biological therapy.

As with any cancer, early detection and treatment necessary to ensure recovery and to less the likelihood of the cancer to spread. Protect yourself: See your doctor immediately if you are experiencing any symptoms or signs of bladder cancer.

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