MENURUT Asosiasi Kanker Amerika (ACS), ada sekitar 53.200 kasus baru kanker kandung kemih tahun ini di Amerika. Dan sekitar 12.200 dari mereka meninggal karena penyakit tersebut.
Mengapa rokok bisa meningkatkan risiko kanker kandung kemih? Zat kimia yang terdapat dalam rokok, akan masuk ke dalam aliran darah. Kemudian mengikuti proses penyaringan di ginjal, dan melewati kandung kemih sebelum dikeluarkan melalui urine.
Tapi seringkali, zat kimia tersebut tertinggal di dalam kandung kemih, dan merusak sel-selnya. Bila terus bertumpuk, kondisi tersebut akhirnya akan meningkatkan risiko terjadinya kanker.
The Bladder: The Organ that Stores Urine
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 a muscular wall that allows it to get larger and smaller as urine is stored or emptied. The wall of the bladder is lined with several layers of transitional cells. Urine passes from the two kidneys into the bladder through two tubes called ureters. Urine leaves the bladder through another tube, the urethra.
What Is Cancer?
Cancer is a group of many different diseases that have some important things in common. They all affect cells, the body’s basic unit of life. To understand different types of cancer, such as bladder cancer, it is helpful to know about normal cells and what happens when they become cancerous.
The body is made up of many types of cells. Normally, cells grow and divide to produce more cells only when the body needs them. This orderly process helps keep the body healthy. Sometimes cells keep dividing when new cells are not needed. These cells form a mass of extra tissue, called a growth or tumor. Tumors can be benign or malignant.
Benign tumors are not cancer. They often can be removed and, in most cases, they do not come back. Cells in benign tumors do not spread to other parts of the body. Most important, benign tumors are rarely a threat to life. Malignant tumors are cancer. Cells in malignant tumors are abnormal and divide without control or order. These cancer cells can invade and destroy the tissues around them. Also, cancer cells can break away from a malignant tumor and enter the bloodstream or the lymphatic system. This process is the way cancer spreads from the original (primary) tumor to form new tumors in other parts of the body. The spread of cancer is called metastasis.
Some common symptoms of bladder cancer include:
· Blood in the urine (slightly rusty to deep red in color).
· Pain during urination.
· Frequent urination, or feeling the need to urinate without results.
Researchers have found that white people in the United States get bladder cancer twice as often as African-Americans, and men are affected about three times as often as women. People with family members who have bladder cancer may be more likely to get the disease as well. Most bladder cancers occur after the age of 55, but the disease can also develop in younger people.
Known and possible risk factors for bladder cancer include:
· Smoking. This is a major risk factor. Cigarette smokers develop bladder cancer two to three times more often than do nonsmokers. Quitting smoking reduces the risk of bladder cancer, lung cancer, and several other types of cancer, as well as a number of other diseases.
· Occupational risk. Workers in some occupations are at higher risk of getting bladder cancer because of exposure to carcinogens in the workplace. Increased risk is seen in people in the rubber, chemical, and leather industries, as well as in hairdressers, machinists, metal workers, printers, painters, textile workers, and truck drivers.