|Micrograph of a urethral cancer, urothelial cell carcinoma, found on a prostate core biopsy. H&E stain.|
Urethral cancer is cancer originating from the urethra. Cancer in this location is rare, and the most common type is papillary transitional cell carcinoma. The most common site of urethral cancer is the bulbomembranous urethra.
Signs and symptoms
Symptoms that may be caused by urethral cancer include: Bleeding from the urethra or blood in the urine, Weak or interrupted flow of urine, Urination occurs often, painful urination, inability to pass urine, A lump or thickness in the perineum or penis, Discharge from the urethra, Enlarged lymph nodes or pain in the groin or vaginal area.
Surgery is the most common treatment for cancer of the urethra. One of the following types of surgery may be done: Open excision, Electro-resection with flash, Laser surgery, Cystourethrectomy, Cystoprostatectomy, Anterior body cavity, or Incomplete or basic penectomy surgery.
Chemotherapy is sometimes used to destroy urethral cancer cells. It is a systemic urethral cancer treatment (i.e., destroys urethral cancer cells throughout the body) that is administered orally or intravenously. Medications are often used in combination to destroy urethral cancer that has metastasized. Commonly used drugs include cisplatin, vincristine, and methotrexate.
Side effects include anemia (causing fatigue, weakness), nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, hair loss, mouth sores, increased risk for infection, shortness of breath, or excessive bleeding and bruising.
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- Urethral Cancer Treatment