Monday, July 8, 2013

Women and Bladder Cancer

I posted this information on Facebook and many of my friends were grateful to know about this.  So I thought I'd post it here, just for your information.  I guess it's been on my mind lately as I have my 6 month cancer check on August 15th.  I'm anxious and worried about how my bladder will be - this is the first time I've gone 6 months, so my bladder has had time to heal since the chemo and I worry that tumors have had time to grow.  I am sure that the chemo is working and all will be fine, I just need to hear the words - NO TUMORS.  Then I'll follow up with 3 weeks of chemo.  Anyhow, for those who would like to know a bit about bladder cancer, here ya go:  Information taken from

Bladder cancer has long been considered a disease of older men. Though it is more prevalent in men, studies have shown that women are more likely to present more advanced tumors and have a worse prognosis than men at almost every stage of the disease. According to a report published by the National Cancer Institute, the survival rate for women with bladder cancer lags behind that of men at all stages of the disease.

Bladder cancer is the fifth most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States, and probably the least talked about.  

It is important for women to understand their risks for bladder cancer and know what to ask their doctors.
Awareness is the key: in most cases, bladder cancer is treatable, but prompt diagnosis is critical.
Why the disparity?

In many cases, there are significant delays in diagnosing bladder cancer in women. Many women ignore the most basic symptom—blood in the urine—which they may associate with menstruation or menopause and delay reporting this symptom to their doctors. Even after reporting the problem to their doctors, blood in the urine may be initially misdiagnosed as a symptom as post-menopausal bleeding, simple cystitis or as a urinary tract infection. As a result, a bladder cancer diagnosis can be overlooked for a year or more.

What do women need to know?

• Bladder cancer can affect women at any age.
• Smoking is the greatest risk factor. Smokers get bladder cancer twice as often as non-smokers.
• Bladder cancer symptoms may be identical to those of a bladder infection and the two problems may occur together. If symptoms do not disappear after treatment with antibiotics, insist upon further evaluation to determine whether bladder cancer is present.
• Bladder cancer has the highest recurrence rate of any form of cancer—between 50-80 percent.
What can you do?

The most important thing for you is to know the signs and symptoms of bladder cancer and report them to your physician immediately. The most common sign—blood in the urine—can be visible (though it may sometimes appear dark brown or orange) but could also only be detected under a microscopic examination. It is important to visit your doctor for routine examinations. Most bleeding associated with bladder cancer is painless, however, about 30 percent of bladder cancer patients experience burning, frequent urination or a sensation of incomplete emptying when they urinate.  If you experience any of these symptoms, see your doctor as soon as possible.

I think it's important to know.  I had never had a bladder infection, so I thought that if the doctor thought that was the problem, then it must be and I was on antibiotics several times.  Being proactive about our health is so important.  I hope this helps make others aware!!

In other news I received an email from my friend JJ at The Fifty Factor.  I won her giveaway, whoo hoo.  It's a signed copy of a book by a blogger:  The Wizard of Otin and the book title is "In Blog We Trust".  I'm an avid reader so I can't wait to get his book.

I've been busy around the house and haven't had much time to do any sewing.  Sorry there aren't any pictures today. 

Happy Stitches and Hugs,

1 comment:

Candace said...

Great info, Tammy and I wish you the best test ever in August!