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Bladder Cancer

Our Approach

Urologic surgeon Colin P. Dinney, M.D., has experience in treating both common and rare bladder cancers with innovative surgical techniques and combination therapies.

When you come to MD Anderson's Genitourinary Cancer Center for bladder cancer care, you are the focus of a team of exceptional experts that customizes your treatment to ensure the best outcomes with the least impact on your body.

This team, which includes medical, surgical and radiation oncologists, as well as a specially trained support staff, works together closely to provide comprehensive, but personalized care every step of the way.

And, they target bladder cancer with the very latest leading-edge technology and techniques for diagnosis and treatment, many of which are available at only a few cancer centers in the nation. These include:

  • Gene therapy
  • Laparoscopic robotic surgery
  • Advanced reconstruction techniques
  • Innovative and personalized chemotherapy
  • Immunotherapy, including BCG (Bacillus Calmette-Guérin)
  • Chemoprevention

Experience, Expertise

MD Anderson surgeons are among the most experienced in the nation in bladder cancer procedures. This can make a crucial difference in your chances for successful treatment and recovery.

We offer early detection and chemoprevention for those at high risk of developing bladder cancer. And we are particularly experienced in the management of high-risk, complex bladder cancer cases, especially those that have returned after treatment.

And, at MD Anderson you're surrounded by the strength of one of the nation's largest and most experienced comprehensive cancer centers, which has all the support and wellness services needed to treat the whole person – not just the disease.

Groundbreaking Research

We are proud to be one of the few cancer centers in the nation to house a prestigious federally funded bladder cancer SPORE (Specialized Program of Research Excellence) program. As one of the world's largest cancer research centers, MD Anderson is leading the investigation into new methods of bladder cancer diagnosis and treatment. Each patient benefits from the most advanced research, delivered as rapidly as possible.

If you have been diagnosed with bladder cancer, we're here to help. Call 1-877-632-6789 to make an appointment or request an appointment online.

Why Choose MD Anderson?

  • Innovative bladder cancer treatments including gene therapy, immunotherapy and chemotherapy
  • Minimally invasive laparoscopic and robotic procedures to treat bladder cancer
  • Advanced reconstruction techniques
  • Highly skilled and experienced surgeons
  • Nationally recognized research program offers clinical trials of new bladder cancer therapies

Bladder Cancer Knowledge Center

Treatment at MD Anderson

Bladder cancer is treated in our:

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Gail Smith

"They treat you like a person — a human being. They respect you."

Bladder Cancer Survivor Gail Smith

Bladder Cancer Facts

Each year, almost 71,000 new cases of bladder cancer are diagnosed in this country. Men, Caucasians and smokers have twice the risk of bladder cancer as the general population. Almost all the people who develop bladder cancer are over 55 years old. When it is diagnosed and treated in the early stages, bladder cancer is usually highly treatable.

The bladder is a hollow organ in the lower abdomen. It stores urine, the waste that is produced when the kidneys filter the blood. The bladder has an elastic and muscular wall that allows it to get larger and smaller as urine is stored or emptied.

Urine passes from the two kidneys into the bladder through tubes called ureters. Urine leaves the bladder through another tube called the urethra. The urethra is longer in men than women.

Bladder cancer begins in the inside layer of the bladder and grows into the walls, becoming more difficult to treat.

Bladder Cancer Types

Bladder cancer is classified based on the type of cells it contains. The main types of bladder cancer are:

Transitional cell bladder cancer: About 90% of bladder cancers are transitional cell carcinomas – cancers that begin in the urothelial cells, which line the inside of the bladder. Cancer that is confined to the lining of the bladder is called non-invasive bladder cancer.

Squamous cell bladder cancer: This type of bladder cancer begins in squamous cells, which are thin, flat cells that may form in the bladder after long-term infection or irritation. These cancers occur less often than transitional cell cancers, but they may be more aggressive.

Adenocarcinoma: Bladder cancer that develops in the inner lining of the bladder as a result of chronic irritation and inflammation. This type of bladder cancer tends to be aggressive.

If you have been diagnosed with bladder cancer, we’re here to help. Call 1-877-632-6789 to make an appointment or request an appointment online.

© 2015 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center