Treatment for Bladder Cancer
Treatment depends on the stage of the cancer, the severity
of your symptoms, and your overall health.
Treatments for stage 0 and stage I bladder cancer usually include: surgery
to remove the tumor without removing the rest of the bladder and chemotherapy
or immunotherapy directly into the bladder. Treatments for stage II and
stage III bladder usually include: surgery to remove the entire bladder
(radical cystectomy) or to remove only part of the bladder, followed by
radiation and/or chemotherapy. Most patients with stage IV tumors cannot
be cured and surgery is not appropriate. In these patients, chemotherapy
is often considered. Chemotherapy may be given to patients with stage
II and III disease either before or after surgery to help prevent the
tumor from returning.
Many bladder cancers are often treated with immunotherapy. In this treatment,
a medication is used to trigger your immune system to recognize and attack
the cancer cells. Immunotherapy for bladder cancer is usually performed
using the Bacille Calmette-Guerin vaccine (commonly known as BCG). If
BCG does not work, patients may receive interferon.
Outcome for bladder cancer depends on the initial stage
and response to treatment. The outlook for stage 0 or I cancers is good.
Although the risk of the cancer returning is high, many bladder cancers
that return can be surgically removed and cured. The cure rates for people
with stage III tumors are less than 50%. Patients with stage IV bladder
cancer are rarely cured using conventional therapies.
Causes of Bladder Cancer
There are a variety of potential causes of Bladder Cancer. A number of
scientists now believe that a drug called Actos may be responsible for
a number of cases. To learn more about what may have caused your bladder
here for more information.
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