Vietnam has more than 1,000 new cases of bladder cancer diagnosed every year (Photo courtesy of the Binh Dan Hospital)

HCM City (VNA) - More than 1,000 new cases of urinary bladder cancer are diagnosed in Vietnam every year, according to HCM City’s Binh Dan Hospital.

Assoc Prof Dr Nguyen Phuc Cam Hoang, the hospital’s deputy director, said that around half of the patients die due to the disease.

On March 5, a 69-old-year man from the city’s district 3 was brought to the hospital after having had blood in his urine and intermittent abdominal pains two weeks.

Doctors found he had three tumors in the bladder. They then decided to use en bloc resection technique to remove the tumor in one piece as an alternative to traditional techniques to help reduce the chances of recurrence.

Hoang said the hospital last year admitted 1,873 bladder cancer patients, many in advanced stages with a high risk of having the whole bladder removed and severe health problems.

If bladder cancer is diagnosed early when the tumours are still small, patients can have them instead of their bladder removed. Their quality of life improves subsequently.

The cancer does not have any specific symptoms and are the same as infections in the bladder or kidney or kidney stones: blood in urine, Hoang said.

If patients have blood in their urine and are treated but do not recover within two months, they should go to specialised hospitals for examination and treatment, he said. Doctors should then prescribe tests for bladder cancer, he said.

Patients with bladder cancer are often between 50 and 60. But Hoang said the hospital also admits many people aged 30-40.

Smoking and working in an environment where workers are exposed to chemicals are the causes of bladder cancer.

Hoang said workers in such environments should visit health facilities periodically for screening.-VNA