According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are more than 100 types of cancer and any part of the body is susceptible to it. The urinary bladder is no exception. Tackling bladder cancer is not easy. In fact, it can be fatal if left unchecked. That's why you need to be aware of the treatment options and risks associated with it. So, if you have a loved one suffering from this deadly disease, below are a few things to help you better understand it.
Thanks to man's innovation in the medical sector, cancerous cells can now be destroyed using drugs. This process involves issuing the patient with drug dosages over a given period of time. There are two types of bladder cancer treatment: intravesical and systematic chemotherapy. Intravesical entails administration of drugs directly to the bladder through the urethra via a flexible tube known as a catheter. On the other hand, systematic chemotherapy involves administering the drugs orally or through an injection.
Since chemotherapy destroys healthy body cells alongside active cancerous cells, it brings about side effects. So, the patient might feel fatigued, pain, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, blood disorders and even hair loss. Not to worry though, these side effects can always be treated.
This treatment involves direct removal of the affected tissue by cutting out the tumor. Medically, the process is called a Transurethral Bladder Tumor Resection (TURBT). The portion cut depends on the stage of the cancer. In extreme cases, the entire urinary bladder is removed and replaced with a new one. This is known as a cystectomy. The major advantage of surgery is that it has a higher probability of totally eliminating the tumor than other methods without causing major side effects.
However it still has some common fully treatable side effects that the patient can expect. Pain and discomfort after surgery, risk of infection, and a dysfunctional reproductive system.
Otherwise known as immunotherapy, this treatment entails using the body's own natural defenses to fight the cancerous growth. Its main aim is to restore and boost the patient's immune system. So, he or she is given drugs directly to the bladder via a catheter. The common drug used for this is BCG (Bacillus Calmette Guerin). This is the same drug used for tuberculosis. It can sometimes be combined with Interferon for more effect.
Common side effects include fatigue, urinary bleeding, fever, urinary discomfort, and fevers. Like other side effects, these are also treatable.
Hello, my name is Peter and I live in Western Australia with my wife on our pet dogs. This is my blog which details how to deal with various medical emergencies and other conditions. Last year, several friends and members of my family suffered from various different kinds of medical problems. Some of them, such as my uncle had to be rushed to the hospital for immediate treatment that saved his life. Lots of my friends had minor problems which had a big impact on the quality of their lives. I take an active interest in first-aid and other medical matters so I decided to start this blog.