Blood in The Urine Should Not Be Ignored
The blood in urine called Gross Haematuria is a common but rather ominous sign of underlying urological disease. It may occur in severe infection, stone disease or benign enlargement of the prostate but it is usually the first sign of cancer in urogenital tract. Its presence should not be ignored in either sex or at any age.
Bleeding in the urine is the cardinal sign of Bladder Cancer. The most common type of Bladder Cancer is called Transitional Cell Cancer. It originates from the innermost lining of the bladder.
For most bladder cancers, if diagnosed at an early stage, the possibility of successful and complete treatment is high. Bladder cancers are notorious for high recurrence rates, and that’s why patients with this disease need to be followed up for a fairly long time.
Risk Factors For Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer risk is increased by:
- Smoking – smoking cigarettes, cigars, or pipes increase the risk of bladder cancer by causing harmful chemicals to accumulate in the urine.
- Increasing age – Bladder cancer risk increases with age.
- Exposure to certain chemicals – Certain chemicals like arsenic and chemicals used in the leather paint and rubber industry are known to be risk factors for bladder cancer.
- Chemotherapeutic agent – Cyclophosphamide increases the risk of bladder cancer.
- Previous radiation treatment – People who received radiation treatments aimed at the pelvis have a higher risk of developing bladder cancer.
Diagnosis Of Bladder Cancer
The diagnosis is most cases are made by a urine test and ultrasound examination. But it must be confirmed by cystoscopy.
A flexible cystoscope may be used without any anaesthesia which aids in obtaining a biopsy of the lesion.
Following scans are required to stage the disease;
Treatment Of Bladder Cancer
Bladder Cancer Prevention Measures;
Treatment options for bladder cancer depend mainly on tumour stage and grade, which is taken into consideration along with overall health. A low-grade tumour usually grows more slowly and is less likely to invade the muscular wall of the bladder. A high-grade tumour tends to grow more aggressively than a low-grade tumour and can spread outside the bladder at an early stage.
Bladder cancer treatment options include:
Surgery – It may be initial endoscopic resection of tumour called TURBT or for high-grade tumours where bladder wall is also involved, removal of the whole bladder called radical cystectomy. It is a major operation, but an appropriate patient done at the right time may save a life.
For superficial high-grade bladder tumours treated with chemotherapy instillation in the bladder (intravesical chemotherapy) is performed.
For advanced cases, the other treatment options include: