The bladder is the repository for most of the body’s fluid waste before being passed. These fluids wastes contain many of the known carcinogens that we take in daily through the ingesting of out highly refined and processed foods. Is it any wonder that the between 1971 and 1974 the number of bladder cancers reported more than doubled according the American Cancer Society?
The incidence of bladder cancer in smokers is approximately twice that of non-smokers. Biological data suggest that genetic factors in activating and detoxifying enzymes may play a role in determining an individual’s susceptibility to bladder cancer in particular when in combination with specific environmental factors such as cigarette smoking and other airborne pollutants.
Many bladder problems are hard to diagnose due to factors such as size or localization. A great majority of carcinomas of the urinary bladder are either undetectable with standard imaging techniques, or cannot be definitively differentiated from non-malignant carcinomas.
Bladder infections are the most common urinary tract infections, however; any part of your urinary tract can be become infected. The urinary tract includes the kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra.
Women have more bladder infections than men because the urethra is shorter in women than men. Bacteria can reach the bladder more easily in women because bacteria have a shorter distance to travel.
Two non-invasive medical tests are commonly used to detect bladder problem. The first is testing for antibodies in the urine. If antibodies are found then the human body is in the process of fighting some type of problem. The second test is looking at cells that have been exfoliated in the urine. If the cells are abnormal in size, shape, color or other abnormalities then furthering testing in the medical laboratory will be required.
Possible signs of a bladder infection are the following:
Cloudy Urination is one way to identify a bladder infection when no other symptoms are present. The color of ones urine does give great insight into the internal condition of the urinary track.
A sharp, knife-like pains in your back or groin. You could possibly have a bladder infection, kidney stone or another serious problem.
Fever with a backache. You may have a kidney disease called pyelonephritis.
Urge to urinate just after using the restroom and when you do you only urinate small amounts. Could be a bladder infection called cystitis, bladder irritation called interstitial cystitis, or from a kidney stone.
In some cases, women also complain of a feeling of not emptying the bladder and heaviness in the lower abdomen.
If blood is present in your urine it could be from a bladder infection, trauma, kidney stone, or a bleeding disorder.
A painful or burning sensation with urination could be a sign of a bladder infection or possible kidney stones.
In males the need to urinate more often than normal, or have problems starting the urine stream, or wake many times at night to urinate could be caused by problems with the prostate gland.
Needing to urinate but not being able to.
Leaking a little urine. Some women report this symptom after childbirth and may be caused from a weakness in the bladder due to childbirth or ageing. This weakness is called stress incontinence.
Urine that smells bad. Some vitamins, or foods, and over the counter products will also produce a strong odor of the urine.
If your doctor thinks you have a bladder infection he or she may prescribe an antibiotic that will turn you urine a bright orange, so don’t be alarmed by the color.
Vitamin C Vitamin A L-cysteine
Vitamin E Zinc Cranberry Juice
Vitamin C can reduce the risk of developing urinary bladder cancer in smokers and drinkers.
Vitamin A is an important immune system stimulant. DR. Nauss reported a reduced T-cell immune response in patients with a Vitamin A deficiency. Vitamin A deficiency may increase the risk of cancers of the lung, larynx, bladder, esophagus, stomach, colon, rectum and prostate. Vitamin A is stored in the liver and fat cells of the human body and can reach toxic levels. DO NOT take more than the recommended dosage of Vitamin A.
L-cysteine is another immune system stimulant but should always be taken in conjunction with Vitamin C to reduce the risk of developing stone formation in the kidneys and bladder.
Vitamin E accelerates wound healing and aids in the functioning of the immune system.
Zinc also has a profound influence on the body’s ability to resist disease.
Cranberry Juice may also help prevent kidney and bladder infections. If you are taking COUMADIN then check with your doctor before using cranberry.
Always consult your doctor before using this information.
This Article is nutritional in nature and not to be construed as medical advice.
Will Aciphex help any victims of heartburn to find real relief? In the following article, an ex heartburn sufferer relates the unpleasant facts about Aciphex, after having measured it against many alternative solutions, and all this for an Over The Counter medicament against heartburn known by millions. Sales per annum of Aciphex already topped $ 1.3 billion (figures from 2006).
Even if healthy people can get occasional heartburn also, recurrent heartburn (every two or three days) may indicate acid reflux, or by its full name, GERD – gastro esophageal reflux disease. About 1 in 5 of all adults in developed western countries are sufferers of recurring heartburn. The name heartburn comes from the sensation of burning and pain in the throat or the chest, especially following eating.
GERD is the result of a muscle between the esophagus and the stomach not functioning properly. This muscle is the lower esophageal sphincter and should shut off the esophagus from the stomach to prevent acid and juices traveling back up to the esophagus. When such acid reflux does occur because of weakness of the sphincter, it can lead to inflammation of the esophageal lining (esophagitis) and problems such as difficulties in swallowing, hemorrhaging, esophageal narrowing and Barrett’s esophagus, which is a prelude to cancer.
There are two factors provoking acid reflux. One is weakness of the esophageal sphincter and the other one is excessive stomach acidity. The acidity is what is targeted by Aciphex as a way of reducing acid reflux symptoms including heartburn.
Aciphex is part of the group of Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPI) which aim to treat acid reflux symptoms. This group also contains Prevacid, Protonix and Prilosec as PPIs that function by blocking the production of acid in the stomach by disabling the proton pump, which is the stomach’s way of making acid.
Nevertheless, this is not the real reason for acid reflux. Aciphex is merely attacking the sensation (heartburn) and not the real reason. When the real reason remains untreated, it will continue to produce the symptom and this may even result in dependency on the drug and degraded acid reflux. Immediate relief may be the big advertising point for PPIs such as Aciphex, but the negative aspects exist as well. Because gastric acid is needed for correct digestion and for its properties in killing off hostile microbes, blocking its production can be unwise.
An astonishing conclusion was made from the role of gastric acid in killing off pathogens that enter the mouth and travel down the esophagus. Without stomach acid, these microbes can then return up the esophagus to double back down into the lungs and provoke pneumonia. If this was not already bad enough, recent research shows that PPI medications can generated other unwanted secondary effects. The possible increases in the risk of pneumonia was just one conclusion from Dutch research done in 2004.
In Great Britain, studies just done indicate that patients using PPI medicaments for over a year and over the age of 50, were 44% more at risk of breaking a hip than acid reflux patients not using PPIs (these PPIs include Aciphex, Protonix, Nexium, Prevacid and Prilosec). The same artificial blocking of stomach acid also interfered with the absorption of calcium and therefore with the correct bone mineral density which led to osteoporosis.
The right holistic approach will allow you to put GERD behind you forever and safely prevent it from ever coming back. Were you aware that heartburn and its painful sensations can now be a thing of the past without having to take Aciphex or any similar medicament?
What is acid reflux? It is the backflow of stomach’s acidic contents into the esophagus or food pipe. The symptoms of acid reflux can be very irritating and are often confused as heart attack. If left untreated it can give serious esophageal damages and can be fatal. They can lead to development of ulcers and even cancer of the esophagus. Hence, one must consult his physician or family doctor for more information on acid reflux symptoms and treatment options.
What Are The Symptoms To Look For?
As stated earlier, some of the symptoms of acid reflux so similarity with heart attack that it can create panic in people. The frequency of the acid reflux can vary from one individual to the other. Even the symptoms can range from mild to severe.
The most common of the various symptoms that signal acid reflux disease, is heartburn. Heartburn does not bear any connection with the heart of the person. In fact it is a burning sensation that occurs in the food pipe and the chest area. Heartburn can be extremely uncomfortable and can often be accompanied by regurgitation of the undigested food in the mouth area, leaving a sour taste. Heartburn can worsen when one lies down.
Heartburn also engulfs the larynx or the throat area and the person can develop severe coughing and a hoarse throat. Sometimes, the coughing gets so bad that it make it difficult to sleep. The symptoms of coughing can eventually turn into asthmatic conditions. In addition to these, there can be difficulties in swallowing.
Chest pain is also very common in cases of reflux. At times, the chest pain leaves the person in panic of heart attack. The easy way to distinguish is that the acid reflux chest pain normally is reduced or gone after taking an antacid. In case of heart attack there is heaviness in the chest which does not seem to subside.
What Can You Do?
The foremost thing to do in case of reflux attacks is to calm down and retrospect the quality of life that one is leading. Having nutritious diet including enough vegetables and fruits combined with an active lifestyle with morning exercise or even walks can reduce the problems of heartburn to a great extent.
Apart from the lifestyle changes, one must get thorough diagnosis of the problem by a physician so as to rule out other abnormalities in the functioning of the body. For example, an EEG will rule out the possibilities of heart problems. Women can face acid reflux problems during there pregnancy. Similarly, threats of having hiatal hernia can also be ruled out.
Medical Acid Reflux Disease Treatments
Medicinal reflux treatments come in a two way process. Normally, for acid reflux problems the doctor suggests medicines and drugs complemented with lifestyle changes. In cases where these do not provide sufficient relief and the symptoms reoccur after stopping the medicines, endoscopies can be prescribed.
In very rare cases, the doctors may suggest surgery to fix the loosened lower esophageal sphincter valve. The surgery is however considered the last option when medicines seize to give any comfort.
The most commonly used medicinal treatment for acid reflux is antacids. Antacids provide immediate relief from the symptoms of heartburn by neutralizing the stomach acids. Gelusil, Mylanta, Tums are the popular antacids. Besides antacids, there are H2 blockers receptors. These work by reducing the amount of acid produced by the stomach. These medications are taken at least 30 minutes before the meals. Ranitidine, Cimetidine, Famotidine are some of the drugs under this category. Yet another effective treatment for acid reflux is the proton pump inhibitor. These work by blocking the acid production and thereby aiding the healing of the damaged esophagus. Prilosec, Nexium are the popular proton pump inhibitors. These medications are available over the counter. However, there are prescription medicines which are of greater strength than their OTC variant.
If medicines have little or no effect in curing the acid reflux symptoms, the doctor may advice certain tests such as the Barium X-Ray, endoscopies, acid probe test etc which can determine the condition and the severity of the esophageal damage. Based on the kind of damage, the doctor may suggest different medication or even surgery. The surgical procedure is very rare and is aimed at tying the upper layer of the stomach over the lower esophagus, thus tightening the esophageal sphincter.
Final Word about Acid Reflux Treatment
Though there are number of medications and treatments available for the problem of acid reflux, the best method is still adopting healthy lifestyle. The medicinal and alternative treatments just cure the symptoms and the best way to control these are changing diet and leading an active life.
Promotional ribbon magnets are very instrumental notably for those people in business. These products can be capitalized specifically to pitch awareness about a certain advocacy or business.Beyond doubt, choosing such gift is a no brainier because people can easily know what you are trying to say putting to work these promotional ribbon magnets. No wonder why it is one of the optimum selling promotional merchandise. It may come in varying colors and each color that will be associated with such product may mean something else. If you are planning to launch a certain promotional event of campaign, here are the colors that you might want to capitalize on.
Red- Red is the color of love and passion but it may also present the color of AIDS/HIV awareness, heart ailment and alcohol and drug abuse.
Pink- The fusion of red and white equates to the color pink. This is the color most popularly known for Breast Cancer Awareness. It is also associated with gay pride.
Orange- By merging red and yellow you’ll assuredly get orange. This is the color of hunger, underage drinking, Work zone safety and leukemia.
Green- By combining blue and yellow you’ll come up with green. This is the color of the grass, the trees and the environment. This is also the color that which is considered as the epitome of the environment and the remembrance of St. Patrick’s Day.
Purple- By putting together red and blue, you’ll assuredly get violet and by mixing it in different ration and adding a little hint of other colors like white you’ll have other shades like purple. This is the color that is the embodiment of domestic violence, pancreatic cancer awareness, Alzheimer’s, Anti Gay bullying (spirit day) and many more.
White- This is technically the color of light. It casts out innocence, peace and purity but it is also considered as the color of diabetes and many others.
Black- Technically, this is the absence of colors. But black is suitable for your custom made ribbon magnets if you are mourning. Most often, it is considered as the color of elegance. Despite the fact, there are times that it is associated with evil and witchcraft.
These are some of the colors that you might want to incorporate to your logo printed ribbon magnets. There are so many colors that you can regularly carry to represent what you really aim for. You can constantly check the internet to see what color fits your advocacy.
Cleaning your colon aids to get rid of the physical body of all of the toxins and parasites that can truly perform a number on the human body. A thoroughly cleansed colon is a measure in the appropriate direction in avoiding colon cancer. Now there is education promptly available about the mortality rates with colon cancer and the importance of early detection.
Colon cancer by and large starts in the big bowel and begins from an amount of dead cells that have been lying dormant for a long time period. An individual is at an even greater risk if there is a family chronicle of colon cancer. Colon purifying is a really positive preventative step in the battle against colon cancer. There are so many factors that lead to colon cancer and many people truly do need to become enlightened about them.
Poor diets that are short in fiber, lack of exercise, poor sleep habits, and smoking are all sparks for the colon to go wild. After long time of abuse to the colon it is likely that a blockage will occur and could really likely go untreated or unheeded. When this occurs you have just produced a breeding base for colon cancer to develop and spread.
By prevention of getting a natural colon cleansing and naturally watching your food intake and ensuring that it is ample in fiber are definitely ways to prevent colon cancer. Colon cancer is a slow growth cancer and it usually makes no sense to delay until there are signs of cancer to begin prevention. A big contribution of the threat comes into play when fat gathers in the walls of the intestines and the rectum. They just hang out there and grow into big lumps of nothing more than a hazard to your health.
Regular physical exercise is also very beneficial because what it does is allows your physical structure to flush out damaging toxins that actually can contribute to cancer. As mentioned before, smoking provides another danger of getting colon cancer as well as extreme radiation which can come from needless X-rays, CAT scans, and mammograms. Symptoms like eczema, frequent flu, allergies, weak immune system, poor intestine movements, low vitality levels, and bloating can be revealing of too many toxins in the human body. Therefore colon cleansing can greatly reduce your chances of having colon cancer.
Westminster, CO — June 3rd, 2010 — Martial Arts students at The Dojo of Karate & Fitness show how they can help kick and punch breast cancer by wearing Pink Karate Belts in class during the week of June 7th to June 11th.
This is a new fund raising program created by owner and Master Instructor, Javier Lozano, Jr.
He decided that their Karate school needed to demonstrate their support to the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, taking place in the Rocky Mountains from June 25th to June 27th, 2010.
“As a business owner, I feel it is my responsibility to get our school together as a community and stand up for something that is important. Breast Cancer is something that affects friends, families, and loved ones”, says Lozano. “In my opinion, business owners have a moral obligation to their clients to give back to the community. We are in contact with so many people who live different lives, and we have an opportunity to influence our community because of the small degrees of separation among various people.”
Martial Arts students at The Dojo of Karate and Fitness will be purchasing Pink Karate Belts for $ 15 per belt, with $ 10 of the proceeds going towards the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.
During the week of June 7th to June 11th, Sensei Lozano has designated it as Breast Cancer Awareness Week, where students will be exchanging their current Karate Belts for Pink Karate Belts. And, students will give up their earned ranks of continuous martial arts training to become a unified rank of Pink.
All students will be learning how health and fitness can help prevent their chances of disease, such as breast cancer. And, by maintaining an active lifestyle that incorporates healthy eating habits, this will allow students and their families to live a more prosperous life.
More importantly, though, it gets the Martial Arts studio together, like a community.
“People want to be apart of something that is bigger than them. They want to be able to give back in a way that actually affects their community. We all want to be proud of something and fight for it. By getting our school together with this new fund raising event, our members feel more empowered than before, and that’s exactly what Martial Arts is really about. It’s not about the kicks and punches, but about how you can help someone else achieve their goals”, says Sensei Lozano.
In addition to the sense of community The Dojo of Karate has created, Sensei Lozano is also creating the future leaders of America through martial arts training.
In every class, students are challenged to become leaders by working hard and leading by example. If someone is having a hard time learning a new technique or move, it’s their responsibility to teach the students who are struggling.
If they have a new child trying out Karate classes, it’s a current students job to teach them the ropes and shadow them during their 1st couple of sessions.
That way students begin to take pride and ownership in their training, at every level.
Those are character traits The Dojo of Karate is always looking to develop in every child because eventually they will have an opportunity to lead a group to follow a common goal. Or start learning how leadership can translate over to great causes in society, such as raising money for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.
Man boobs are an embarrassing condition. There are many men who suffer from this condition and have tried to correct the situation without success. This is because it can sometimes be a serious condition, which may require more than just a little diet and exercise to correct. The medical term for man boobs is gynecomastia, which basically means womans breast. There are two types of gynecomastia. The first type, which is caused by a medical condition or medication that the man is taking. The second type of male breasts is pseudogynecomastia which is generally due to obesity.
We find man boobs occurring in male infants right after birth. Their little breasts appear enlarged due to the mother’s hormones. In young adolescent teenage boys this condition sometimes reoccurs not because of the mother hormones but due to an imbalance in their own hormone levels. This type is considered a medical condition. While male boobs is not a dangerous condition itself it can be a sign of a more serious underlying medical condition and should be properly diagnosed by a physician. In adolescent boys this condition usually corrects itself in a few years as the hormone levels tend to equal out. If the adolescent boy is not over weight than this condition should correct itself and the breast will return to normal in a few years. If they are associated with an obese boy than a diet and exercise program can be introduced to help with reduction.
In older males who develop the condition it can be more difficult to diagnose. In 25% of man boob cases the occurrence is unknown. There are several medicines that can cause the development of the problem. There are also many medical conditions that are also associated with the development of man breasts. The obvious reason would be obesity. If you are a male with the condition, trying a diet and exercise program to reduce the size is a great first step.
To try and eliminate gynecomastia through diet and exercise you will have to introduce a cardio workout while also targeting the pectoral area as well. Working just the pecs will not reduce the size. You will need to lose the weight first to reduce the size of the mammary area. In many cases surgery is the only way to completely eliminate the problem due to the excess mammary tissue. This tissue must be removed through cosmetic surgery to reduce the appearance.
No matter what your age or size if you are suffering from man boobs it is important to speak to a medical physician about your condition. This problem can sometimes be easily corrected by changing medications or discovering and treating an underlying condition. It is important to remember that it is not a dangerous condition but it can be a sign of a dangerous condition such as testicular cancer, chronic kidney disease, or chronic liver disease. There are many reasons why you are developing male breasts and it is always best to have this condition checkout by a medical professional.
Acid reflux is also known as heartburn is extremely uncomfortable to all those who suffer. Acid reflux is a condition where gastric juices containing acid travel back from the stomach into the esophagus. Factors contributing to acid reflux include fatty foods, cigarettes, chocolate, caffeine, alcohol, obesity, pregnancy and delayed stomach emptying.
If the acid reaches the throat, it is called laryngopharyngeal reflux disease. A simple and relatively harmless way to treat a one-off heartburn is to drink a solution of a small amount of sodium bicarbonate or baking soda mixed with water, which quickly neutralizes the acid that causes the pain its not a cure so contact a physicial if you experience more than a week of consistent acid reflux.
Hoarseness, dental erosion and asthma can all be symptoms of acidic juices making their way into the throat, mouth and air passages of the lungs. Antacids provide fast relief of symptoms, but relief typically lasts for only thirty to sixty minutes. Thirty to sixty minutes of relief can be great for those suffering but what most people are looking for is permanent relief some medications can provide this sort of relief.
Medications commonly used in the treatment of heartburn include acid suppressants, such as histamine H2-antagonists or acid blockers. Proton pump inhibitors work on the cells in the stomach wall, which make acid, to reduce the amount of acid produced and released into the stomach chamber. Some medications or antacids work by increasing the pressure of the lower esophageal sphincter which is the muscular valve between the lower end of the stomach and the small bowel. Most over-the-counter medicines are commonly used to treat mild acid-related symptoms, like heartburn or indigestion, and work by neutralizing acid in the stomach. If you are experiencing heartburn of any kind can be a sign of a more serious problem.
If heartburn or acid reflux occurs when lying down, relief is often found by raising the head of the bed, raising the upper body with pillows, or sleeping sitting up. Tight clothing around the abdomen can increase the risk for heartburn because it puts pressure on the stomach, which can cause the food and acids in the stomach to move upward into the esophagus. Restricting diet is very important, since approximately ninety percent of sufferers of heartburn or esophageal disorder can link their symptoms to specific foods they eat.
Those with acid reflux disease usually experience worse symptoms after they eat, or when they lie down or bend over. Heartburn may signal other problems such as esophagitis which is inflammation of the esophagus or GERD, which can be more serious. The symptoms of heartburn can be frequent and may last several weeks, months or longer if left untreated and develop into GERD. Sufferers should choose the kinds of foods and drinks which have little risk of causing acid reflux, while some kinds of foods or drinks should be avoided as they are major heartburn triggers.
GERD can be a life threatening disease where the stomach acid erodes the lining in the stomach that protects it from hydrochloric acid. Once this happens bleeding can happen and cause discoloration in ones stool or bowel movements. If left untreated, GERD can lead to cancer and eventually death.
In conclusion, most people with acid reflux experience the discomfort associated with these symptoms and live with a reduced quality of life due to pain which extend to everyday activities, including work. Consult a physician if you experience heartburn of any kind because acid reflux is not normal and needs to be taken care of. Remember to avoid certain foods and lifestyle which promote gastro-esophageal reflux, including common drinks like Coffee, alcohol, and excessive amounts of Vitamin C supplements stimulate gastric acid secretion. Vitamins such as calcium carbonate can help reduce acid and easy symptoms.
After menopause, women come to have similar risks of CAD as men of the same age. As a result, the rate of death in women from CAD is increasing. Perimenopause (PER-ee-MEN-oh-pawz), which is sometimes called “the menopausal transition,” is the time leading up to a woman’s last period. During this time a woman will have changes in her levels of the hormones estrogen (ES-truh-jin) and progesterone (proh-JES-tuh-RONE). Falling levels of hormones result in the symptoms of menopause. Symptoms vary between women and can include irregular periods, hot flashes , mood swings , irritability , weight gain , breast tenderness and stress incontinence .
Going through menopause symptoms is just as inevitable, but how we travel that road is also a choice. We can choose to glide through it like a swan on a lake, or fight it like a bass on a line. In the face of prolonged amenorrhea with or without menopausal symptoms, an FSH level 40 mIU/mL is considered diagnostic of menopause. Although in this setting, a FSH evaluation is rarely needed to confirm the postmenopausal state. The signs of menopause also include weight gain, most often around the mid section. Lean muscle mass decreases and it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain or gain lean muscle.
How a woman experiences menopause varies since estrogen and progesterone levels will lower at different rates in each woman. Some women experience vaginal dryness, hot flashes, urinary tract infections, tearing of the skin of the vagina, inability to hold urine, shrinkage of the breasts or sleeplessness and irritability. Earlier it was essential to treat different symptoms of women’s menopause by means of estrogen replacement therapy (ERT). This way of treatment uses only estrogen and it is forbidden for women who have a history of cancer. Menopause doesn’t raise your risk of developing ovarian cancer; the risks increase with age. Ovarian cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer death among women.
Unfortunately, it won’t help hot flashes and other symptoms of menopause, so being a good candidate for Raloxifene is limited to those who cruise through menopause without the symptoms. And though they may appear to help relieve some of the symptoms of menopause, these supplements are not proven to help prevent bone loss or improve the health of your heart. However, it is important to keep in mind that as kidney tonic herbs treat menopause, they also regulate the endocrine system. Therefore, it is not unusual for women to experience menstruation once the herbs are initiated.
During menopause a woman’s body slowly makes less of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. This often happens between the ages of 45 and 55 years old. We advocate for research that will improve the lives of women and their families and will lead to a clear understanding of menopause and its effects. We seek to go beyond the mythology, the distortions, and the comedy, to underscore research and promote the reality of this life condition. The term menopause is derived from two Greek words, meno and pause; which means, periods and stoppage. In simple meaning, menopause is indicated when the period of women stops.
Perimenopause is also called the climacteric. Heavy bleeding is also a possibility due to low levels of progesterone and higher levels of estrogen. Reading this website will enhance your quality of life and longevity by preparing you to actively and effectively become a partner in your menopause-related healthcare decisions. And research also indicates that women begin to experience restless sleep as many as five to seven years before entering menopause. Again, though, the problem is recognizing that the insomnia you’re suffering from has its roots in changes in your hormone levels.
Approximately five thousand cases of gallbladder cancer are diagnosed each year in the United States. Most of these cases are found incidentally while a person is being examined for potential gallstones. Gallbladder cancer has a very poor prognosis, typically because the symptoms tend to be very vague and nonspecific. In addition the gallbladder is anatomically difficult to access surgically, making surgical interventions problematic. These factors often delay the diagnosis of gallbladder cancer until it is relatively advanced and make treatments more difficult.
The risk of gallbladder cancer increases with age. Women are two to six times more likely to get gallbladder cancer than men. Gallbladder cancer is found more commonly in caucasians than in the black population.
Approximately 70 to 90% of people who come down with gallbladder cancer will also have a gallstone present. This makes the presence of gallstones one of the most important risk factors for the development of gall bladder cancer. It should be noted however that a vast majority of people with gallstones will never get gallbladder cancer. In fact, the rate of gallbladder cancer in patients with gallstones is only approximately 1 to 3%. The exact relationship between gallstones and gallbladder cancer is uncertain.
Another risk factor for gallbladder cancer is an uncommon condition associated with chronic gallstones known as porcelain gallbladder. Porcelain gallbladder is a condition where the interior wall of the gallbladder becomes calcified and smoothed, looking much like a porcelain surface. This condition is almost exclusively found in people with gallstones. The incidence of gallbladder cancer in patients with a porcelain gallbladder is quite high. Various studies have estimated the incidence to be anywhere from 15 to 50%.
The presence of small polyps within the gallbladder can be a risk factor for gallbladder cancer. These polyps are small outgrowths within the mucosal wall of the gallbladder, and are typically found incidentally when a patient is being evaluated for a different gallbladder issue. Gallbladder polyps can be benign or malignant, and the exact association between them and gallbladder cancer is not well established.
There are two infections which have been associated with increased risk of gallbladder cancer. The first of these is a Salmonella infection. Several studies have shown an increased risk of gallbladder cancer in people with chronic Salmonella infections of the gallbladder. The exact mechanism by which a chronic Salmonella infection can cause the gallbladder cancer is not well understood.
The other infection which has shown an association with gallbladder cancer is Helicobater pylori. H pylori is the same bacteria which is commonly associated with peptic ulcer disease. Once again, the exact association between this infection and gallbladder cancer is not well understood.
Signs and Symptoms
Gallbladder cancer can typically progress for many years without any symptoms. The first symptoms to appear are often nonspecific and can easily be confused with many other conditions. Patients will often complain of pain, lack of appetite, vomiting, and nausea. The symptoms are similar to what is seen with gallstones. As gallbladder cancer advances to later stages, a person will often become chronically tired and lose a significant amount of weight.
Many patients with gall bladder cancer will also become jaundiced. This means that there skin and eyes will become notably yellow.
Methods of Diagnosis
As with many cancers, the sooner gallbladder cancer is detected, the better the outcome can be. Because of the nonspecific nature of most of the symptoms, gallbladder cancer is typically detected by imaging the gallbladder directly.
The most commonly used imaging technique for any condition related to the gallbladder is an ultrasound. These tests are inexpensive, easy to perform, and not uncomfortable for a patient. Unfortunately there are limitations to the effectiveness of an ultrasound. These tests are highly dependent on the skill of the operator, and have a high rate of missing a diagnosis.