Urological cancers

Urological cancers

These include cancer of the prostate, bladder, kidney, penis and testis.

Prostate cancer

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men with approximately 47,000 new cases diagnosed in U.K every year.

Although prostate cancer affects older men, its not uncommon to find younger men with this disease especially with a strong family history. Most prostate cancers are incidentally diagnosed but some men can experience urinary symptoms. PSA (Prostate Specific Antigen) is an important screening blood test selectively used to screen men with suspected prostate cancer. An assessment of the prostate through a rectal examination by a urologist gives an estimate about the size of the prostate as well as the texture of the prostate gland which might prompt further tests such as MRI scan and biopsies of the prostate to rule out cancer.

Bladder cancer

Bladder cancer is the 2nd most common urological cancers and is more common in men than women.

. Approximately 10,000 new cases are diagnosed every year in U.K. The commonest symptom is blood in the urine (haematuria). The tumour is diagnosed by examining the bladder via a telescope (flexible cystoscope) as an outpatients procedure. Approximately 70% of bladder tumours involve the lining of the bladder and are managed by telescopic removal of the bladder tumour under anaesthesia followed by chemical treatment of the bladder with drugs such as mitomycin or BCG. 15-20 % bladder tumours involve the muscle of the bladder and are treated by surgical removal of the bladder (cystectomy) or radiotherapy with or without chemotherapy.

Kidney cancer

Kidney cancer is the 8th most common cancer in U.K.

Most kidney cancers are diagnosed incidentally on imaging and are asymptomatic. The mainstay of kidney cancer treatment is surgical removal of the tumour (partial nephrectomy) or removal of the whole kidney ( radical nephrectomy). This can be done via open or key hole surgery.

Penile cancer

Penile cancer is rare with approximately 550 cases diagnosed each year in U.K.

. The warning signs are growth or soreness of the penis lasting for more than 4 weeks, penile discharge, bleeding. These cancers are diagnosed with a biopsy . Biopsy proven cancers are then managed usually by surgical removal of the tumour with or without part of the penis. The procedure can involve complex reconstruction such as skin grafting.

Testicular cancer

Testicular cancer is commonly seen in young men and is the most common cancer in males between 20- 39 years.

Approximately 2000 patients are diagnosed each year in U.K. The commonest presentation is a painless lump in the testis. Rarely it is picked up on incidental ultrasound scan. The treatment involves removal of the whole testis (orchidectomy) followed by surveillance or chemotherapy.