Advances in treatment have boosted the survival rate for bladder cancer; most people do survive the disease. However, it’s important to be aware that you remain at risk for developing this cancer again. Someone who has a tumor removed from the bladder lining has about a 70 percent risk of developing another tumor in the lining at some point.
After your treatment ends, we’ll continue to provide you with follow-up care that includes regular exams and testing to make sure that you stay cancer free. During these visits, your doctor may order x-rays, urine tests, or blood tests. If the bladder was not removed, your doctor will examine it using a cystoscope.
Follow-up Care for Stoma Recipients
If your bladder is removed as part of treatment, our surgeons may create an opening on the abdomen, called a stoma, through which urine can pass to be collected in an external pouch. Our nurses provide expert support in helping patients care for a stoma.
An inpatient certified wound ostomy continence nurse (CWOCN) will answer your questions and teach you how to manage and care for the stoma. When you leave the hospital, this nurse will give you written instructions on how to care for the stoma and change the urine collection pouch. We can also arrange for a nurse to come to your home to help you care for the stoma.
A few weeks after leaving the hospital, you’ll have a follow-up appointment so that your doctor and an outpatient CWOCN can inspect the stoma and provide further support and instruction. Over the following months, your outpatient CWOCN will continue to help you with questions about your care; for long-term care, you can make follow-up appointments with him or her to address any concerns that arise.