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Are all tumors in the bladder cancerous?
Tumors or swelling of a part of the body, usually without inflammation, are caused by the abnormal tissue growth. Tumors can be either benign (not malignant or cancerous) or cancerous (malignant, out-of-control cell growth). Bladder cancer or bladder tumors are relatively common in the United States, and most bladder tumors are cancerous. Bladder cancer signs and symptoms may include the following:
- hematuria (blood in the urine, painless) in about 80-90 % of patients
- frequent urination
- painful urination
- pelvic pain
- back pain
- a mass or lump found on physical exam
The types of bladder cancers include urothelial carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. Tests are used to determine if the tumor is cancerous. The tests may include cystoscopy, biopsy, urine cytology, and/or imaging by CT or other tests to use a contrast dye to provide a detailed view of the bladder (and ureters).
If you suspect you may have a bladder tumor, your primary care doctor can refer you to a urologist to examine you and run the various tests used to diagnose bladder cancer. The earlier the diagnosis, the more likely for you to have a successful treatment outcome.
Bladder cancers (tumors) are staged from stage I through stage IV :
- Stage I: cancer occurs in the bladders inner lining but not to muscular bladder wall
- Stage II: cancer invades the muscular bladder wall but goes no further
- Stage III: cancer is through the bladder wall and into surrounding tissue
- Stage IV: cancer has metastasized to the lymph nodes and/or other organs like bone or lung
Bladder tumors, depending upon the stage of the tumors and the advice of your urologist, may include surgery, reconstructive surgery of the urinary tract, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and/or immunotherapy.
For more information, read our full medical article on bladder cancer signs, symptoms, treatment, and prognosis