Urological cancers affect structures within the urinary system and pelvic area. Reproductive structures and parts of the male reproductive tract can also be affected.
It’s common for urological cancers to be treated with surgery by the best urologist in Orange County, although other treatment options may be effective for some patients. Your doctor can help you determine the best treatment options for your situation.
Causes and Symptoms
Urological cancers are caused by abnormal cell growth. In addition to the kidneys and bladder, structures that can be affected include tubes that carry urine to the bladder called ureters, the tube that takes urine out of the body (urethra), and the penis, prostate, and testicles in men.
Symptoms of urological cancer can vary based on what specific urinary/reproductive system structure is affected. Some people may notice recurring urinary tract infections (UTIs), and other individuals may experience symptoms that include:
Blood in urine
Many of the symptoms associated with urological cancer are common in other urological conditions as well, so the presence of these symptoms does not necessarily mean that you are going to be diagnosed with cancer. In general, it’s good to bring any concerns to your urologist’s attention.
Common Urological Cancers
Bladder cancer is one of the more common types of urological cancers. While anyone can be affected, it’s more likely to occur in older adults. One or both kidneys can be affected by cancer as well. Most kidney cancers are detected early before other areas can be affected.
Because penile cancer is rare, men are more likely to be affected by prostate cancer, which is also more likely to occur in older adults. Often characterized by a lump seen or felt in the affected testicle or groin aches, testicular cancer is another urological cancer that may affect men.
Both men and women can be affected by urethral cancer, although it’s more common in older women. Individuals who have previously had bladder cancer are also more susceptible to developing urethral cancer.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis of urological cancers usually involves a review of symptoms and image and blood/urine tests selected by the best urologist in Orange County. Treatment will depend on what’s affected and how far the cancer has progressed. In some instances, the affected tissue may be removed, while other patients may benefit from a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. In some cases, the affected structure needs to be partially or fully removed. Nearby tissues may need to be removed as well.
Because of contributing factors that may include genetics, not all urological cancers are entirely preventable. What can be done, however, is to make an effort to keep the urological system as healthy as possible by drinking plenty of water, sticking to smart diet and exercise habits, and reporting any unusual symptoms to the best urologist in Orange County.