New Bladder Cancer Diagnosis - What to Expect

The video provides an overview of bladder cancer, breaking the process down into three simple steps: diagnosis, staging, and treatment.

Read the full video transcript below:

This video is an overview of bladder cancer.

A new diagnosis of bladder cancer can be overwhelming, but the whole process can be simplified into three simple steps: diagnosis, staging, and treatment.

When your doctor suspects bladder cancer they will begin a thorough diagnostic workup. 

This may include a detailed medical history, physical exam,and urine tests to check for blood or abnormal cancer cells in the urine. Another common test is a cystoscopy where a tiny camera is used to look inside your bladder for any signs of cancer. If there are suspicious signs of cancer, a biopsy is performed. 

The next step is staging. 

Staging studies answer the question of “how advanced is cancer?”.

Your doctor May order imaging studies like CT scans or MRIs or even a bone scan or PET scan. The purpose of these scans is to determine whether the bladder cancer has spread to other parts of the body. These staging scans are essential because this helps your doctor decide which is the best treatment for the cancer.

After we've established a new diagnosis of bladder cancer and performed staging studies to see how advanced it is, the final step is selecting the best treatment. 

Selecting the best treatment depends on several factors including the stage of the cancer, your overall health as well as personal preference.

Treatment options typically include surgery to remove the tumor, a part or the entire bladder, or immunotherapy to boost your body's ability to fight cancer cells. In some cases, radiation therapy or chemotherapy may be recommended to target the cancer cells.

This is not medical advice. Talk to your doctor before making any medical decisions.