It is a common fact; cancer lives and breaths among our society. For many Americans, suffering with a cancer diagnosis often leads to life altering health complications, complicating familial, social and professional relationships. Of these progressive cancers, bladder cancer is a common occurrence although not routinely recognized within consumer health initiatives. For individuals suffering with bladder, or urinary tract, complications, understanding the warning signs, diagnosis and treatment of bladder cancer may work to ensure early detection and treatment are obtained, thereby restoring daily living activities.
Considered a cancer of the aging population, bladder cancer is not commonly recognized in the younger population. In the elderly, bladder cancer most often is found in men and is believed to be associated, directly, with a prolonged history of cigarette smoking. As the location where urine is temporarily stored, bladder cancer leads to a significant number of deaths, often through renal failure.
For men suffering from frequent urination, especially at night, healthcare professionals commonly lean to the preliminary conclusion of prostate involvement. With an enlarged prostate, men commonly suffer from pressure against the urinary tract which leads to a frequent need to urinate. However, in cases with bladder cancer, the presence of blood in the urine, in addition to an urgency to urinate, is coupled with the urination frequency. In most cases, pain is not associated. As a result, when suffering from a combination of these urinary symptoms, a man should consult a healthcare professional for complete physical examination of not only the prostate but also of the bladder.
To confirm the diagnosis of bladder cancer, a surgical procedure called cystoscopy is done to sample small tissues of the bladder in addition to a magnified and well it examination if the entire bladder through a telescopic medical device. Following this outpatient procedure, any tumors or abnormal cell growths are further assessed to determine if malignancy is present and, if so, to what degree the cancer has progressed.
For patients suffering from advanced stages of progressive bladder cancer, a procedure known as urinary diversion with associated cystectomy is commonly performed. During these procedures, the bladder is totally or partially removed and the urinary processes are diverted to an artificial urinary reservoir or a complete bladder replacement. For this procedure, the male bladder cancer patient is provided with a better quality of life over the use of external urinary devices.
As with any male associated health condition involving frequent urination, it is imperative that medical advice and screening be obtained regularly. When suffering from symptoms associated with a common bladder dysfunction, discuss cystoscopy with the healthcare professional as bladder cancer is often overlooked in the more progressive approach to rule out prostate complications in men.