July is Bladder Cancer Awareness Month. Each year, more than 73,000 Americans are diagnosed with new cases of bladder cancer. Although bladder cancer is one the ten-most common cancers in the US (fourth-most common in men and ninth-most common in women), it is ranked 22nd for research money. Perhaps this is why bladder cancer is not as well understood as other cancers.

Doctors don’t really know what causes bladder cancer, but they have identified certain risk factors. These include:

  • Smoking
  • Working with certain industrial chemicals
  • Cancer treatment with Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide)
  • Long-term treatment with diabetes medications containing pioglitazone (Actos, Actoplus Met, and Duetect)
  • Chronic bladder inflammation
  • Increased age
  • Being male
  • Being white
  • A personal history of bladder cancer or cancers of the colon, rectum, or ovary
  • A family history of bladder cancer or cancers of the colon, rectum, or ovary

Bladder cancer can be treated if it is detected in its early stages. Early signs of bladder cancer include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Unexplained abdominal pain
  • Unusually frequent urination
  • Burning or pain during urination
  • Blood in the urine

It is important that anyone with these symptoms sees a doctor. The five-year survival rate for those with stage-0 bladder cancer is 98 percent; however, bladder cancer has a very high rate of recurrence. About one-third of patients treated for bladder cancer will experience a recurrence.

Recurrent bladder cancer is more difficult to treat. When bladder cancer makes it impossible to work, Social Security disability benefits (SSDI) are an option. To learn more about applying for SSDI for bladder cancer, contact the Omaha disability attorneys at Cuddigan Law at 402-933-5405.or email [email protected]

Sean D. Cuddigan
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SSA and VA Disability Attorney in Omaha, Nebraska
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