November 21, 2018

 

Immunotherapy for Bladder Cancer-Hope Medical Group

Bladder Cancer is a type of cancer that begins in your bladder — a balloon-shaped organ in your pelvic area that stores urine. Bladder cancer begins most often in the cells that line the inside of the bladder. Bladder cancer typically affects older adults, though it can occur at any age.

 

The great majority of bladder cancers are diagnosed at an early stage — when bladder cancer is highly treatable. However, even early-stage bladder cancer is likely to recur. For this reason, bladder cancer survivors often undergo follow-up tests to look for bladder cancer recurrence for years after treatment.

Symptoms

Bladder cancer signs and symptoms may include:


. Blood in urine (hematuria) — urine may appear dark yellow, bright red or cola colored;
or urine may appear normal, but blood may be detected in a microscopic examination of the urine
. Frequent urination
. Painful urination
. Urinary tract infection
. Abdominal pain
. Back pain

 

Causes

 

It's not always clear what causes bladder cancer. Bladder cancer has been linked to smoking, a parasitic infection, radiation and chemical exposure.

 

Bladder cancer develops when healthy cells in the bladder go awry. Rather than grow and divide in an orderly way, these cells develop mutations that cause them to grow out of control and not die. These abnormal cells form a tumor.

 

Types of bladder cancer

The type of bladder cell where cancer begins determines the type of cancer. Different types of cells in your bladder can become cancerous. Your bladder cancer type determines which treatments may work best for you. Types of bladder cancer include:


Transitional cell carcinoma.
Transitional cell carcinoma occurs in the cells that line the inside of your bladder. Transitional cells expand when your bladder is full and contract when your bladder is empty. These same cells line the inside of your ureters and your urethra, and tumors can form in those places as well. Transitional cell carcinoma is the most common type of bladder cancer in the United States.



Squamous cell carcinoma.
Squamous cells appear in your bladder in response to infection and irritation. Over time they can become cancerous. Squamous cell bladder cancer is rare in the United States. It's a more common in parts of the world where a certain parasitic infection (schistosomiasis) is a prevalent cause of bladder infections.



Adenocarcinoma.
Adenocarcinoma begins in cells that make up mucus-secreting glands in the bladder. Adenocarcinoma of the bladder is rare in the United States.

 

Risk factors

 

It's not clear what causes bladder cancer, but doctors have identified factors that may increase your risk of bladder cancer. Risk factors include:


Increasing age.
Your risk of bladder cancer increases as you age. Bladder cancer can occur at any age, but it's rarely found in people younger than 40.



Being white.
Whites have a greater risk of bladder cancer than do people of other races.



Being a man.
Men are more likely to develop bladder cancer than women are.



Smoking.
Smoking cigarettes, cigars or pipes may increase your risk of bladder cancer by causing harmful chemicals to accumulate in your urine. When you smoke, your body processes the chemicals in the smoke and excretes some of them in your urine. These harmful chemicals may damage the lining of your bladder, which can increase your risk of cancer.



Exposure to certain chemicals.
Your kidneys play a key role in filtering harmful chemicals from your bloodstream and moving them into your bladder. Because of this, it's thought that being around certain chemicals may increase your risk of bladder cancer. Chemicals linked to bladder cancer risk include arsenic and chemicals used in the manufacture of dyes, rubber, leather, textiles and paint products. Smokers who are exposed to toxic chemicals may have an even higher risk of bladder cancer.



Previous cancer treatment.
Treatment with the anti-cancer drug cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan) increases your risk of bladder cancer. People who received radiation treatments aimed at the pelvis for a previous cancer may have an elevated risk of developing bladder cancer.



Chronic bladder inflammation.
Chronic or repeated urinary infections or inflammations (cystitis), such as may happen with long-term use of a urinary catheter, may increase your risk of a squamous cell bladder cancer. In some areas of the world, squamous cell carcinoma is linked to chronic bladder inflammation caused by the parasitic infection known as schistosomiasis.



Personal or family history of cancer.
If you've had bladder cancer, you're more likely to get it again. If one or more of your immediate relatives have a history of bladder cancer, you may have an increased risk of the disease, although it's rare for bladder cancer to run in families. A family history of hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC), also called Lynch syndrome, can increase your risk of cancer in your urinary system, as well as in your colon, uterus, ovaries and other organs.

 

Complications

 

Bladder cancer often recurs. Because of this, bladder cancer survivors often undergo follow-up testing for years after successful treatment. What tests you'll undergo and how often will depend on your type of bladder cancer and your treatment, among other factors.

 

Ask your doctor to create a follow-up plan for you. In general, doctors recommend a screening exam of the inside of your urethra and bladder (cystoscopy) every three to six months for the first four years after bladder cancer treatment. Then you may undergo cystoscopy every year. Your doctor may recommend other tests at various intervals as well.

 

People with aggressive cancers may undergo more frequent screening. Those with less aggressive cancers may undergo screening tests less often.

 Immunotherapy for Bladder Cancer

Treatment

 

Cancer is a class of diseases characterized by out-of-control cell growth. There are over 100 different types of cancer, and each is classified by the type of cell that is initially affected.

 

Cancer harms the body when damaged cells divide uncontrollably to form lumps or masses of tissue called tumors (except in the case of leukemia where cancer prohibits normal blood function by abnormal cell division in the blood stream). Tumors can grow and interfere with the digestive, nervous, and circulatory systems, and they can release hormones that alter body function. Tumors that stay in one spot and demonstrate limited growth are generally considered to be benign.

More dangerous, or malignant, tumors form when two things occur:

1. a cancerous cell manages to move throughout the body using the blood or lymph systems, destroying healthy tissue in a process called invasion

2. that cell manages to divide and grow, making new blood vessels to feed itself in a process called angiogenesis.

When a tumor successfully spreads to other parts of the body and grows, invading and destroying other healthy tissues, it is said to have metastasized. This process itself is called metastasis, and the result is a serious condition that is very difficult to treat.

Cancer is ultimately the result of cells that uncontrollably grow and do not die. Normal cells in the body follow an orderly path of growth, division, and death. Programmed cell death is called apoptosis, and when this process breaks down, cancer begins to form. Unlike regular cells, cancer cells do not experience programmatic death and instead continue to grow and divide. This leads to a mass of abnormal cells that grows out of control.

Cancer symptoms are quite varied and depend on where the cancer is located, where it has spread, and how big the tumor is. Some cancers can be felt or seen through the skin - a lump on the breast or testicle can be an indicator of cancer in those locations. Skin cancer (melanoma) is often noted by a change in a wart or mole on the skin. Some oral cancers present white patches inside the mouth or white spots on the tongue.

Other cancers have symptoms that are less physically apparent. Some brain tumors tend to present symptoms early in the disease as they affect important cognitive functions. Pancreas cancers are usually too small to cause symptoms until they cause pain by pushing against nearby nerves or interfere with liver function to cause a yellowing of the skin and eyes called jaundice. Symptoms also can be created as a tumor grows and pushes against organs and blood vessels. For example, colon cancers lead to symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, and changes in stool size. Bladder or prostate cancers cause changes in bladder function such as more frequent or infrequent urination.

 

As cancer cells use the body's energy and interfere with normal hormone function, it is possible to present symptoms such as fever, fatigue, excessive sweating, anemia, and unexplained weight loss. However, these symptoms are common in several other maladies as well. For example, coughing and hoarseness can point to lung or throat cancer as well as several other conditions.

 

When cancer spreads, or metastasizes, additional symptoms can present themselves in the newly affected area. Swollen or enlarged lymph nodes are common and likely to be present early. If cancer spreads to the brain, patients may experience vertigo, headaches, or seizures. Spreading to the lungs may cause coughing and shortness of breath. In addition, the liver may become enlarged and cause jaundice and bones can become painful, brittle, and break easily. Symptoms of metastasis ultimately depend on the location to which the cancer has spread.

There are five broad groups that are used to classify cancer.

1. Carcinomas are characterized by cells that cover internal and external parts of the body such as lung, breast,
and colon cancer.
2. Sarcomas are characterized by cells that are located in bone, cartilage, fat, connective tissue, muscle,
and other supportive tissues.
3. Lymphomas are cancers that begin in the lymph nodes and immune system tissues.
4. Leukemias are cancers that begin in the bone marrow and often accumulate in the bloodstream.
5. Adenomas are cancers that arise in the thyroid, the pituitary gland, the adrenal gland, and other glandular tissues.

Cancers are often referred to by terms that contain a prefix related to the cell type in which the cancer originated and a suffix such as -sarcoma, -carcinoma, or just -oma. Common prefixes include:

. Adeno- = gland
. Chondro- = cartilage
. Erythro- = red blood cell
. Hemangio- = blood vessels
. Hepato- = liver
. Lipo- = fat
. Lympho- = white blood cell
. Melano- = pigment cell
. Myelo- = bone marrow
. Myo- = muscle
. Osteo- = bone
. Uro- = bladder
. Retino- = eye
. Neuro- = brain

Early detection of cancer can greatly improve the odds of successful treatment and survival. Physicians use information from symptoms and several other procedures to diagnose cancer. Imaging techniques such as X-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, PET scans, and ultrasound scans are used regularly in order to detect where a tumor is located and what organs may be affected by it. Doctors may also conduct an endoscopy, which is a procedure that uses a thin tube with a camera and light at one end, to look for abnormalities inside the body.

Extracting cancer cells and looking at them under a microscope is the only absolute way to diagnose cancer. This procedure is called a biopsy. Other types of molecular diagnostic tests are frequently employed as well. Physicians will analyze your body's sugars, fats, proteins, and DNA at the molecular level. For example, cancerous prostate cells release a higher level of a chemical called PSA (prostate-specific antigen) into the bloodstream that can be detected by a blood test. Molecular diagnostics, biopsies, and imaging techniques are all used together to diagnose cancer.

Biological Cancer Treatment

 For more information on stem cell immunotherapy for bladder cancer, please complete a medical form here or visit http://hopestemcell.com/cancer-immunology

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