May marks Bladder Cancer Awareness Month, and this is a good time to learn more about this form of cancer that is more prevalent in men than woman. According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 16,000 deaths from bladder cancer are expected in 2017. It’s not a common cancer, making up only 5 percent of U.S. cancer cases. What you should know is that it’s more common in aging adults with most cases diagnosed after a person’s 70th birthday.
Bladder cancer involves the growth of cancerous cells within the bladder. It is a cancer that can metastasize, meaning the cancer can spread to other areas of the body. This is why it’s important to catch bladder cancer early, preferably when it’s still in the interior cells of the bladder wall. As the cancer grows through the bladder walls and heads towards the outer wall, it becomes difficult to battle.
What Are the Symptoms?
One of the key symptoms of bladder cancer is the presence of blood in the urine. The problem is that blood in the urine has many causes, including a urinary tract infection (UTI). Therefore, a urine test is not a reliable source for early detection.
Other symptoms of bladder cancer include frequent urination, a burning sensation while you urinate, or feeling like your bladder is full after you’ve already urinated. Again, these can also be signs of a UTI. If your mom or dad is showing these symptoms, it’s worth talking to a doctor as a precaution.
As bladder cancer progresses, your parent may not be hungry, feet may swell, and pain in the lower back is common. It may become difficult to urinate. At this point, it’s important to ask the doctor to do a urine test that looks for cancerous cells in the urine.
How Can You Make Sure Your Mom or Dad Doesn’t Have It?
Make sure you take your mom or dad for regular check-ups with the family doctor. If your mom or dad hasn’t filled out HIPPA paperwork to include you as a person who can discuss your parent’s medical results, make sure you get added. This enables you to call and find out when the last medical exam occurred. If it’s been a year or longer, schedule an appointment.
What Happens if Bladder Cancer is Found?
Make sure your parent gets to every appointment. If you need to enlist the services of a senior care professional, do so. Having transportation to and from appointments is important, and it’s one of the many things a senior care agency can help you with.
If you or an aging loved one are considering senior care in Brooklyn Park, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.