Transitional cell carcinoma is a main cause of cancer in the bladder, ureter, and renal pelvis (part of the kidney). This form of carcinoma can also affect the lungs and around the lungs, and the ovaries. Transitional cell carcinoma usually causes several tumors in the bladder, and the tumors can arise from just one affected cell. Signs and symptoms include blood in the urine, constant back pain, feeling tired all of the time, weight loss without trying to lose weight, and painful/frequent urination.
Transitional cell carcinomas is thought to be caused by a change in the genes, but other factors can include smoking, exposure to coal/tar/asphalt, abuse of phenacetin (a type of pain medication), and the use of certain cancer medications like cyclophosphamide and ifosfamide. Doctors can diagnose this disease by doing urine tests, taking biopsy (sample) of cells from the renal pelvis, and doing an MRI/CT/Ultrasound of kidneys and bladder (different tests that take pictures of the inside of the body).
Treatment for transitional cell carcinoma depends on the severity, but usually involves a surgery, chemotherapy, or other anti-cancer medicines. If you or a family member has been diagnosed with transitional cell carcinomas, talk to your doctor about the most current treatment options. Support groups are also good resources for information.
Description Last Updated: Nov 25, 2017