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Bladder cancer – Signs, Symptoms and Causes

Bladder cancer begins in bladder. Bladder is part of your body (it is balloon-shaped organ) in the pelvic area. Its function is to store the urine. This type of cancer in the most cases has begun in the inside line cells of this organ. It can affect people on any age. But in the most cases this type of cancer has shown that mostly affects the older people [1].  In the most cases this type of cancer can be diagnosed in the very early stage. In this stage is easy to treat this type of cancer. But in some cases is shown that even some people have cured from this type of cancer, after in their life have passed few years from the day in which they have cured, they have again bladder cancer. [2,3] Even if you had bladder cancer and you are cured from it, you should make all the tests to be sure that this type of cancer will not appear in the future.

Bladder cancer – Signs and symptoms

The signs and symptoms of the bladder cancer are:

  • Pain in the back
  • Pain in the pelvic
  • When you urinating you are feeling pain
  • You feel constant desire to urinate
  • You are seeing blood in the urine when you are urinating (the urine can be cola colored or red colored)

bladder cancerWhen to see a doctor? If you have some of the symptoms which we have mentioned above and you feel pain or you have blood in your urine, you should immediately go to your doctor. Your doctor will make you tests to investigate why are you feeling those signs and symptoms. When your doctor has made tests and he is suspecting that you have bladder cancer, then your doctor will refer you to urologist which is specialized doctor for the urinary diseases. Also, if your doctor suspects that you have serious stage of bladder cancer, then he will refer you to the oncologist which has specialized in the cancer diseases. When you have appointment with your doctor, then you should be prepared for all the questions that he may ask you. Before you visit your doctor, you should write about your signs and symptoms. Tell your doctor if you had some medical experience in the past and what kinds of home remedies or medication that you have taken for improving your condition. Your doctor can ask you some of the next questions:

  • What kind of signs and symptoms are feeling?
  • When is the first time you have started to feel these signs and symptoms?
  • Are you feeling the symptoms all the time or in some periods?
  • Is your condition improved from the first time that you have started to feel the symptoms?
  • Is your condition worse from the first time that you have started to feel the signs and symptoms of your disease?
  • What kind of medicines have you taken in the past?

What kind of home remedies have you taken in the past?

Causes for bladder cancer

In the most cases is not known the right reason for bladder cancer. There can be some types of causes such as: radiation, smoking, chemical exposure and parasitic infection.  When the cells in the bladder are growing abnormally, then this is cause for this type of cancer. These abnormal cells are reason for appearance of the tumor.

Risk factors: These risk factors are associated with bladder cancer:

  • Being white: People who are from the white race are having increased chances to get this disease compared to people from other races. [4]
  • Smoking: People who are smoking are having increased chances to get bladder cancer, because the harmful chemicals are accumulating in the urine. When you are smoker some of the chemicals which are absorbed in your body, then your body is excreting the chemicals in the urine which can damage the lining of the bladder. This is cause for bladder cancer. [5]
  • Being a man: Men are having increased chances to get bladder cancer compared to the women. [6]
  • Previous cancer treatment: If you have taken anti-cancer treatment in the past, then you are having increased chances to get bladder cancer [2]
  • Increasing age: People who are over 40 are having increased chances to have bladder cancer. [1]
  • Personal or family history of cancer: If you had cancer in the past or some of your family had bladder cancer, then you are more willing to have this cancer. [7]
  • Chronic bladder inflammation: If you have some urinary tract infections in the past, then you are having bigger risk to have this disease.
  • Taking a certain diabetes medication: Patients, who have taken diabetes medications more than one year, are having increased chances to develop bladder cancer. [8]


[1] Taylor JA, Kuchel GA. Bladder cancer in the elderly: clinical outcomes, basic mechanisms, and future research direction. Nature Clinical Practice Urology. 2009;6(3):135–44.

[2] Loras A, Trassierra M, Sanjuan-Herráez D, et al. Bladder cancer recurrence surveillance by urine metabolomics analysis. Scientific Reports. 2018.

[3] Robinson AG, Izard JP, Booth CM. The role of population-based observational research in bladder cancer. Bladder Cancer. 2015;1(2):123–31.

[4] Wang Y, Chang Q, Li Y. Racial differences in urinary bladder cancer in the United States. Scientific Reports. 2018;8:12521.

[5] Freedman ND, Silverman DT, Hollenbeck AR, et al. Association between smoking and risk of bladder cancer among men and women. JAMA. 2011;306(7):737–45.

[6] Zhang Y. Understanding the gender disparity in bladder cancer risk: The impact of sex hormones and liver on bladder susceptibility to carcinogens. Journal of Environmental Science and Health C: Environmental Carcinogenesis & Ecotoxicology Reviews. 2013;31(4):10.1080/10590501.2013.844755.

[7] Murta-Nascimento C, Silverman DT, Kogevinas M, et al. Risk of bladder cancer associated with family history of cancer: Do low-penetrance polymorphisms account for the increase in risk? Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention. 2007;16(8).

[8] Xu Y, Huo R, Chen X, Yu X. Diabetes mellitus and the risk of bladder cancer: A PRISMA-compliant meta-analysis of cohort studies. Medicine (Baltimore). 2017;96(46):e8588.

Hanan Marshal
Hanan Marshal
Hanan, a medical student (MBBS) having passion for writing and is very much interested in holistic living along with nature. He is very much interested in doing community service and watches anime and play PS4 during his free time. You can reach him through [email protected]


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