Kidney and Bladder Cancer
When cancer affects your most critical organs, it’s important to do everything possible. That means going beyond standard treatments, matching you with clinical trials and working with other cancer centers nationwide to find the best care for you.
Kidney and Bladder Cancer At A Glance
Kidney and bladder cancer have a serious symptom in common – blood or blood clots in your urine. Kidney cancer was traditionally indicated by pain or a growing mass in the back or side, but in current times is most often identified on a CT scan / CAT scan, or other imaging done for an unrelated reason. The most common symptom for bladder cancer is still blood in the urine, but other symptoms can be pain or burning during urination, having to go more frequently, or feeling the need to urinate, or not being able to pass urine.
Steps to Diagnosis
Once your primary care physician has reason to suspect kidney or bladder cancer, you should be referred to a Genitourinary Cancer team. That specialist will perform additional testing, which may include a biopsy, blood and urine tests, or other imaging tests.
Men are more twice as likely to develop kidney cancer, and 3-4 times more likely to develop bladder cancer than women. Smokers are considerably more likely to develop both cancer types. Patients over 65 make up over 70% of bladder cancer diagnoses. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, and obesity increase the risk of a kidney cancer diagnosis.
For both bladder and kidney cancer, quitting smoking will reduce your risk, as well as managing your weight and blood pressure with diet and exercise.
Both bladder and kidney cancer respond well to precision medicine as part of a personalized treatment plan designed specifically for you. These treatments may include:
A variety of surgical procedures can effectively treat kidney and bladder cancer, depending on the stage and how much the cancer has spread.
Intravenous and/or oral medication that attacks and kills cancer cells in the body.
Intravenous medication that stimulates your immune system, helping it recognize and destroy cancer cells.
High-powered energy beams, such as X-rays, are used to kill cancer cells directly.
Therapy focused on blocking the growth and spread of cancer cells by targeting the specific genes, proteins, or tissue affected by cancer.
Cancer is personal to you, your loved ones – and to us. Our unique point of view allows us to work together to create a personalized care plan focused on the principles of precision medicine, ensuring that your treatment is exactly the right fit for your genetic profile, lifestyle, and individual circumstances.
Our interdisciplinary team considers the right care plan from multiple perspectives, often consulting with other internal experts to gather up-to-the-moment insight on treatment options.
Then, your course of treatment will be designed to suit your exact medical needs, using precision medicine to do the most good while remaining minimally invasive. That means we’re focused not just on eradicating the disease, but on preserving your quality of life before, during, and after your treatment.
We are here to help you heal as a whole person. So wherever your care path leads, you can be sure our entire team will be there with you every step of the way.
Please contact us to for more information about other cancers and conditions we treat including:
- von Hippel-Lindau Disease
Wherever your individual care plan takes you, we’ll work closely with you to understand your preferences, and your needs – and be sure any additional support is ready when you need it, including:
- Dietary or nutrition advisors, providing special focus and attention for chemo patients
- Genetic counselors to help you understand your risk factors
- Social workers dedicated to easing your emotional burdens and helping with community benefits
- Financial counselors to help you understand the financial aspect and work with you to reduce the burden when possible
- Specialty pharmacy liaisons who help authorize your prescriptions and educate you on managing side effects and taking your medicine properly
- Nurse navigators to help guide you throughout the cancer center, every step of the way
- Physical and rehabilitation therapists who provide integrated care alongside your primary care plan