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What are symptoms of bladder cancer?

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General Surgeon
Practicing since : 2008
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Hi, I'm really scared that I may have bladder cancer. For the past 4 months I have had pain in my bladder area that feels like slight burning or that my bladder is full. I also have had pain under my testicles. Sometimes I have pain in the tip of my penis when I pee. My bladder will at times burn when I pee. When it's at it worst I have to go to the bathroom once every hour to hour and a half. I have seen a 2 different Urologists. I have had my urine tested 4 times over the last 4 months and it has been clean each time. No infection and no Blood. I have tried Cirpo, Doxcline, Flomax and now I'm on oxybutynin. I also have had my prostrate examined and a prostate massage. The pain does come and go. I will feel good for 3 or 4 days and then the pain comes back for a week. I have been going through this cycle for 4 months now. One Urologist said I most likely have chronic non bacterial prostatitis. I asked about possible bladder cancer and he said NO... you don't have blood in urine. My 2nd Urologist said bladder cancer was unlikely however I'm having a cystoscopy done next week. He said it could be my pelvic floor or overactive bladder. I've read online that Invasive Bladder cancer usually doesn't display blood in urine and usually there is pain in bladder. This has me really freaked out that this could be bladder cancer. My questions: What are symptoms of bladder cancer? Can you have no blood in Urine over the course of 4 months ( had 4 urine samples done) but have pain and this be bladder cancer? Would pain come and go if its was bladder cancer? Or would it progressively get worse? I look forward to a detail response. Thanks, XXXXXXX
Posted Sat, 1 Mar 2014 in Urinary and Bladder Problems
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 39 minutes later
Brief Answer: Detailed below. Detailed Answer: Hello! Thank you for the query. Bladder cancer is strongly associated with age (the risk significantly rises over 70) and smoking. At your age, bladder cancer is really hardly possible. Please note that cancer(in general) is a rare disease. The average population risk of any cancer is about 5%. Sometimes the risk of car accident is higher (but you do not think about this possibility when driving a car, don't you?). Same situation is with bladder cancer. Young, non-smoking person without any family history of this cancer should not be afraid of it. You symptoms are related to urinary tract. But is really hardly possible that you may have this cancer. Before answering your questions, one more thing. Please note that known symptoms of any cancer are established basing on the statistics. It means that most of people have typical symptoms. But in fact every cancer is a different thing as the area where it starts growing is different to any patient. Also every patient has different DNA and so have cancer cells. So as a conclusion, everything is possible. Answering your questions: 1.Bladder cancer at the beginning doesn not give any symptoms at all. This can be present for quite long time (few months, year). First noticeable symptom is blood in the urine (but this does not mean that every blood in the urine is caused by a cancer). Nonspecific symptoms (different for every person) like burning when urinating, frequent urinating, lower abdominal pain can appear, but do not have to. 2.Yes, it is possible to do not have blood in the urine and have bladder cancer. 3. Yes, pain can come and go with the cancer. It all depends how the tumor is located and how it disturbs urine flow (bladder cancer can cause infection due to impeded urinating). But with increased tumor size, symptoms should constantly get worse (but still can come and go). Cystoscopy is a very good choice at your situation. It will rule the cancer out and will give you a peace of mind. Hope this will help. Feel free to ask further questions. Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: What are symptoms of bladder cancer? 39 minutes later
Thanks for your response. I realize that the odds are in my favor for this not too be cancer however its hard to not think that way as I have been experiencing this pain for 4 1/2 months now. I would think if it was prostatitis there would be relief by now. I'm nervous about the cystoscopy both for the procedure and the results. But I'm looking forward to an answer? How uncomfortable is the cystoscopy procedure? They said they will only inject a gel into my urethra and I will be awake. Thanks
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 9 minutes later
Brief Answer: . Detailed Answer: Sometimes prostatitis is very hard to treat. So long term treatment does not rule it out. Please do not be nervous about this procedure. The gel they are going to inject contains local anesthetic (Lidocaine). This should make it only slightly painful. But can not promise that it wont be painless. Some pain will be present for sure. But usually similar to the discomfort/pain during catheter insertion. And this procedure will give the answer if its a cancer or not. Regards.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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