What Is Radiation Therapy for Advanced Bladder Cancer?

Q: My mother is a patient with bladder cancer that is advanced. The doctor recommends her to take a combined treatment of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Isn’t radiation therapy the treatment applied in the early stage of the cancer? What the doctor recommends it to my mom?

A: Radiation therapy can be used to treat bladder cancer both in early and advanced stage. It is a very accurate and precise technology. In some cases, the tumor in the bladder is hard to reach, but the radiation oncologist can target it with advanced radiation therapy delivery system.

High-energy rays, like X-ray, can slow down and even kill cancer cells. While higher radiation doses are directed at bladder cancer cells, the exposure to healthy and normal tissues is reduced. Though high-energy rays sound terrifying, it does not hurt when the patient is receiving the therapy.

Radiation therapy is often used for early-stage bladder cancer, but it can also used in advanced bladder caner to prevent or treat symptoms. The combination of radiation therapy and chemotherapy is an important treatment for people with advanced bladder cancer, especially for those who can’t take the surgery. It helps patients to ease their symptoms and live longer.

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