Bladder Cancer

Modified on 2009/10/14 21:52 by admin
The bladder is a hollow organ in the lower abdomen. It stores urine, the liquid waste produced by the kidneys. Urine passes from each kidney into the bladder through a tube called a ureter.

An outer layer of muscle surrounds the inner lining of the bladder. When the bladder is full, the muscles in the bladder wall can tighten to allow urination. Urine leaves the bladder through another tube, the urethra.

The wall of the bladder is lined with cells called transitional cells and squamous cells. Of the 50,000 new cases of bladder cancer diagnosed every year in the United States, more than 90 percent begin in the transitional cells. This type of bladder cancer is called transitional cell carcinoma. About 8 percent of bladder cancer patients have squamous cell carcinomas.

The exact cause of bladder cancer is unknown, although there are certain risk factors that may increase a person's chance of developing the disease. Risk factors include age, use of tobacco, infections, race, gender (three times as many men as women develop bladder cancer) and family history of the disorder.

Symptoms of bladder cancer include, but may not be limited to, blood in the urine (making the urine slightly rusty to deep red), pain during urination, and frequent urination, or feeling the need to urinate without results.

People with bladder cancer have many treatment options. They may have surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or biological therapy. Some patients get a combination of therapies.

Bladder cancer was recently linked to dyes containing benzidine.

See Also

  1. Bladder Control & Urination Problems: Overview
  2. Benzidine
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