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Bladder Cancer


The treatment options for bladder cancer are:

  • Surgery: There are several surgical interventions available for bladder cancer. Some of them include the following:
      Cystectomy: If the patients suffer from invasive bladder cancer, the oncologists recommend cystectomy. It is a procedure involving partial or complete removal of the bladder. In the case of partial cystectomy, the wall and the muscles are removed, and the hole is then closed through stitches. The side effect of partial cystectomy is frequent urination due to the reduced ability of the bladder to hold urine. Radical cystectomy involves the removal of the complete urinary bladder and the surrounding lymph nodes.
      Transurethral resection of bladder tumor (TURBT): It is the treatment option for patients diagnosed with bladder cancer at an early stage. It involves using a catheter to remove superficial cancer from the bladder. In some cases, the cancer specialists recommend another more extensive TURBT to ensure that all cancer from the bladder has been removed.
      Reconstructive surgery: In the case of radical cystectomy, the patients require other options to store and eliminate urine. Some reconstructive surgeries after radical cystectomy include continent diversion, incontinent diversion, and neobladder reconstruction.
  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves delivering the drug to kill the cancer cells. There are usually two chemotherapy techniques used for managing bladder cancer. First is intravenous drug delivery into the body that reaches the bladder and blood flow. Another is Intravesical delivery, in which a catheter is inserted into the urethra and delivers the drug into the bladder. The drug is left in the bladder for a pre-specified period and is then drained.
  • Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy is used in several situations, such as in early-stage bladder cancer, either alone or in combination with surgery, to reduce the chances of radical cystectomy, advanced bladder cancer, and management of bladder cancer symptoms (as palliative care).
  • Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy involves killing the cancer cells by making them highly vulnerable to attack by the immune cells. The immunotherapy drugs interfere with the process that protects the cancer cells from the immune cells.
  • Targeted therapy: Targeted therapy inhibits the genes, proteins, or enzymes that are essential for the growth and development of bladder cancer cells. The therapy is usually effective in cases where the other treatment options are failed.
  • Bladder preservation: The onco-surgeons may try combinatorial treatment modalities in patients who do not wish to undergo radical cystectomy. The approach is known as tri-modality and involves TURBT, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.

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