Bladder cancer is the sixth most common type of cancer found in the United States. Bladder cancer occurs when cells in the bladder begin to in an uncontrolled manner, eventually developing into a mass known as a tumor. These tumors may get large and begin to invade tissues outside the bladder, or they may remain small and localized. When bladder cancer becomes advanced, it may spread to further areas of the body, causing cancerous tumors to grow there as well.
Knowing how the bladder works is essential to receiving the best treatment available. The bladder is a responsible for storing the urine that the body produces until it is released. It is a hollow, muscular organ that collects the urine slowly as it passes from the kidneys through small tubes called ureters. When the bladder becomes full, it uses its muscular walls to expel the urine, which exits the body through a small tube known as a urethra.
The bladder, ureters and urethra are all made up of layers of similar cells. When the cells in any of these structures begin to grow without check, bladder cancer may be the result. It may only take the unrestricted growth of a single cell to result in a larger cancerous mass. If this tumor is allowed to continue to grow, it can grow through the wall of the bladder and begin to invade other areas of the body.
One layer of tissue found in the bladder, the urothelium or transitional epithelium, is more likely than any other to begin to grow in an uncontrolled manner, resulting in cancer.
We offer treatment for bladder cancer in many of its types and stages at our Anchorage cancer center, giving patients hope that they may have the possibility of a better tomorrow. If you would like to learn more about our treatment process, contact our office at 907-771-0517.
Send us your questions and one of our Board Certified Physicians will respond within 24 hours.