Bladder cancer is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in the U.S., with more than 65,000 new cases diagnosed each year.
It is more prevalent in the male population, being the fourth most common form of cancer in men, and the ninth in women.
Fortunately, the majority of bladder cancer cases are very treatable, and currently, more than half a million Americans are living as bladder cancer survivors.
Many people are unaware that smoking is the most common risk factor for developing bladder cancer, as more than 50 percent of cases are linked to a history of tobacco use. Certain occupational exposures can put individuals at higher risk as well, including individuals working in the dye, textile, rubber and petroleum industries.
The main sign of bladder cancer is blood in the urine that is most often painless, which can be visible to the individual or detected on a micro-exam. Another, less common symptom of the disease, is a significant or sudden onset change in bladder emptying habits.
Individuals who have noticed any symptoms of the disease should discuss them with their primary care doctor to see if they need referral to a specialist, especially individuals with known risk factors. Our community is fortunate, as Cone Health has an exceptional network of urologists, oncologists and related healthcare providers dedicated to providing the best possible treatment for individuals with bladder cancer—close to where they live and work.
Dr. Les Borden is a urologist at Alliance Urology and a member of the Cone Health Medical Staff. Dr. Borden is a 2000 graduate of Ohio State University College of Medicine. He completed his residency in urology at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center and a fellowship in laparoscopy and urologic oncology at Virginia Mason Medical Center.