Bladder Cancer


Bladder cancer is a fairly common type of cancer in the United States. An estimated 81,190 people will be diagnosed with bladder cancer ​and some 17,240 people are expected to die from the disease in 2018, according to the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program.

There are three types of bladder cancer. These cancers are named for the type of cells that become malignant:

  • Transitional cell carcinoma, cancer that begins in cells in the innermost tissue layer of the bladder. These cells are able to stretch when the bladder is full and shrink when it is emptied. ​Most bladder cancers begin in the transitional cells.
  • Squamous cell carcinoma, cancer that begins in the squamous cells, and may form after long-term infection or irritation.
  • Adenocarcinoma, cancer that begins in glandular (secretory) cells that are found in the lining of the bladder. This is a very rare type of bladder cancer.

Risk factors for bladder cancer include tobacco use, having a family history of the disease, exposure to certain chemicals in the workplace, drinking well water with high levels of arsenic, and having a history of bladder infections.

Source: National Cancer Institute


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