Urinary Bladder Cancer
Urinary bladder cancer can be found in both dogs and cats, with a lesser incidence in cats. Transitional cell carcinoma is the most common tumor of the urinary bladder and accounts for 90-95% of tumors in this location. In dogs, this is a tumor that arises in the lower neck of the urinary bladder and the urethra (the tube that leads from the bladder to the outside of the body).
In many cases the clinical signs of bladder cancer are similar to those of a urinary tract infection. These include but are not limited to bloody urine, frequent urination and straining. Definitive diagnosis for bladder cancer can be reached through cystoscopy. During cystoscopy the lower urinary tract is easily visualized and samples of abnormal tissue can be gathered and sent to a lab to be analyzed.
Treatment of transitional cell carcinoma includes treatment of any secondary urinary tract infection, chemotherapy and pain relievers to ease any discomfort. Surgical removal of the tumor is usually unsuccessful due to the location of the tumor.
Transitional cell carcinoma has a tendency to spread to surrounding tissues. Eventually the tumor will grow into the urethra and cause obstruction of urine outflow. This becomes a medical emergency. Urethral Stenting is a minimally invasive and often successful option for patients with obstruction of urine outflow.