Bladder Cancer Treatment Options

Understanding Your Bladder Cancer Treatment Options

Bladder cancer is very treatable in most circumstances, with many patients remaining cancer-free after five years. Treatment options vary, and doctors recommend treatments in combination based on patient needs. Often when cancer is caught early, bladder cancer surgery or a similar intervention is a one-step solution. Today, CyberKnife treatment offers an alternative to surgery that has been shown to be as effective or more effective.

 

What Is CyberKnife?

Where traditional surgery counts on the removal of physical tissue to take a tumor out, CyberKnife uses targeted radiation to kill the tumor without invasive surgery. There is still a surgical procedure, but instead of taking out tissue, they are placing the guides necessary for surgically precise radiation treatment. The result is the destruction of tumor tissue in a way that is targeted enough to preserve the healthy tissue around it more efficiently than traditional surgery.

 

Other Bladder Cancer Treatment Options

In addition to CyberKnife and surgery, doctors may use these therapies to help patients with complex cases of bladder cancer.

  • Chemotherapy
  • Immunotherapy
  • Intravesical therapy
  • Traditional radiation therapy

These additional treatment types are most often used for cancers that do not have a single tumor location, like leukemia. They are also commonly used for large and very irregularly shaped tumors and for cancers that have metastasized to multiple organs or systems of the body. That way, tumors can be reduced in size until a more decisive therapy can completely remove them.

 

Screening for Bladder Cancer

If you are wondering whether you are at risk for cancers of this type, it’s easy to look at the list of factors that can be controlled and interrogate which ones might have impacted your life. Things like a family history of cancer cannot be controlled, but if you have ongoing exposure to environmental factors that can cause cancer, knowing what to remove from your life can help make treatment more effective.

  • Past incidents of bladder cancer
  • Family histories of cancer
  • Workplace exposure to carcinogens
  • Lifestyle choices including nicotine use and alcohol overuse

Typically, bladder cancer is not screened for in the general public because it is rare enough not to warrant it. There are screening options available for those whose past history or current lifestyle put them in a high-risk category, though, and it is worth asking your doctor for a screening on a regular basis if you are in one of those groups. It’s also a good idea to talk to your doctor immediately if you see blood in your urine or stool. That is usually the inciting incident that leads to a bladder cancer diagnosis.

 

Get Help Fighting Bladder Cancer

Our team can recommend and implement treatment options, provide second opinions, or even perform confirmations of diagnoses. If you’re looking at your options for treating bladder cancer, talk to one of our associates about scheduling a consultation, and find out how our cancer center can help you be cancer-free.

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