Complementary and Alternative Treatments for Bladder Cancer


 The presence of blood in the urine and painful
urination, though, are telltale signs of bladder cancer.

cancer strikes three times as many men as women and is usually found in
people over the age of 40. Approximately 40,000 new cases of it are
diagnosed yearly in the United States, and more than 15,000 people die
from it each year. It is commonly caused by exposure to artificial
chemicals and industrial compounds.

Signs and Symptoms

Blood in the urine

Pain during urination

Appetite or weight loss

Low-grade fever

Pain in the pelvic area or lower back

Conventional Medical Treatment

you suspect that you have bladder cancer, visit your physician
immediately. Often the diagnosis is suspected because blood is detected
during a routine microscopic examination of urine conducted during an
annual physical exam. To confirm the diagnosis, your doctor may perform
a CAT scan, or a cystoscopic examination, during which a scope is
passed through the urethra into the bladder to collect a sample of the
bladder lining, which is then tested for malignant cells. If bladder
cancer is diagnosed early, surgery alone is usually successful in
removing the growth. After surgery, the patient must be tested every 3
to 6 months for recurring masses. Approximately 70 percent of bladder
surgery patients develop another small tumor within five years.

the cancer is not diagnosed early and is allowed to penetrate the
bladder wall or surrounding layer of fat, the cancer will probably
require surgery followed by radiation therapy or chemotherapy. During
radiation therapy, a focused beam of high-energy radiation is used to
destroy cancerous cells. Radiation is targeted only at affected areas
as and is performed regularly for a set period of time. During
chemotherapy, the patient must take medication (usually intravenously)
that is designed to kill cancer cells.

Complementary and Alternative Treatments

Traditional Chinese Medicine

traditional Chinese Medicine regards cancer as an energy imbalance
caused by any number of factors, including poor diet, lack of exercise,
stress, environmental toxins, or overwork.

Acupuncture may be
used to improve the flow of energy along the bladder meridian and by
targeting specific acupoints, which may offer pain relief. It also can
be used to help reduce the negative side effects of radiation or

Acupressure This modality works on the same
principles as acupuncture, and the same meridians can be manipulated to
help alleviate pain and promote overall energy balance. Herbs that
strengthen the immune system may often be very beneficial.

Herbal Therapy Studies in Japan have demonstrated that fresh aloe vera
juice contains chemicals that slow the growth of cancer cells and
impair their ability to spread.