Bladder cancer starts in cells, called transitional cells, which line the bladder. The tumors are classified based on the way they grow:

  • Papillary tumors have a wart-like appearance and are attached to a stalk.
  • Nonpapillary (sessile) tumors are much less common and more invasive.

What Are the Causes of Bladder Cancer?

Although the exact cause of bladder cancer is uncertain, certain things put you at higher risk:

  • Cigarette Smoke
  • Contact with cancer-causing chemicals, or carcinogens, in the workplace. People who work with dye, rubber, aluminum, leather and pesticides are at highest risk.
  • The chemotherapy drug cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
  • Radiation therapy to treat cervical cancer
  • A long-term bladder infection or irritation may lead to a certain type of bladder cancer

How is Bladder Cancer Diagnosed?

Physicians may use the following tests to confirm a diagnosis of bladder cancer:

  • Complete medical history
  • Physical exam
  • Cystoscopy
  • CT scan
  • Ultrasound
  • MRI
  • PET scan

Your physician may also order blood tests to help determine the diagnosis, including a complete blood count (CBC), liver function and tumor markers.

Bladder Cancer Treatment By Stage

Bladder cancer treatment depends on the stage of the cancer, the severity of your symptoms and your overall health.

Stages 0 and I: bladder surgery to remove the tumor and chemotherapy of immunotherapy directly into the bladder.

Stages II and III: radical cystectomy (removal of the bladder); surgery to remove only a part of the bladder, followed by Stages II and III: radical cystectomy (removal of the bladder); surgery to remove only a part of the bladder, followed by radiation and chemotherapy; chemotherapy to shrink the tumor before surgery; or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation in patients who choose not to have bladder surgery or who are not candidates for surgery. and chemotherapy; chemotherapy to shrink the tumor before surgery; or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation in patients who choose not to have bladder surgery or who are not candidates for surgery.

Stage IV: in most patients, the malignancy has progressed too far for a cure. Chemotherapy may be considered for some patients.

Why Choose Memorial Hermann for Treatment?

Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers are accredited by the American College of Surgeons’ (ACoS) Commission on Cancer (CoC). This rare distinction is given to cancer programs that uphold the highest standard of care for patients. When you choose Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers for your cancer treatment, you can rest assured you will receive the best possible care delivered by a compassionate team of caregivers in a calm, healing environment.

Contact Us

For more information about Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers, including how to get connected to our support services or an affiliated provider, please call (833) 770-7771 or fill out the form below to be connected to one of our Oncology Nurse Navigators.

Important Information About the COVID-19 Vaccine

By filling out this form, you are contacting an Oncology Nurse Navigator from Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers. At this time, our oncology nurse navigators are unable to schedule vaccination appointments.

For more information on COVID-19 vaccinations, please visit our Vaccine Information Hub or get in touch with Memorial Hermann by calling (833) 772-2864 or emailing covidvaccine@memorialhermann.org

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