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Dearest family and friends, welcome to my CaringBridge website. I am using it to keep you all updated in one place as I share my journey and fight against bladder cancer. I truly appreciate your prayers, support, and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
Cancer is not the only big 'C' in my life, Christ is number 1, Christ conquered the grave. He has walked with me during the illness and death of my precious son Arthur. He has sustained me through the waiting period before double knee replacements and recovery afterwards. He has been right beside me sharing His peace during this diagnosis. I am very grateful for the community of my BFG and church, and for my dear friends Donna, Kathy, and Pam, and son Alex for all their support.
More on Bladder Cancer: 70,000 new cases of bladder cancer are diagnosed every year. It is the 4th most common cancer in men and 9th in women and is the 5th most commonly-diagnosed cancer in the U.S. There are more than 500,000 bladder cancer survivors in the U.S. today. The most common clinical sign of bladder cancer is painless gross hematuria, visible blood in the urine. Cigarette smoking is the most common risk factor for bladder cancer, approximately 50% of those diagnosed have a history of smoking. And yes, I was young and dumb once, starting smoking as a teen but quit in my early 20's. Other risk factors is exposure to chemicals derived from compounds called arylamines, putting dye, textile, rubber, and petroleum workers at risk, as well as painters and hairdressers
The bladder is like a balloon with a thick muscle wall on the outside and a relatively thin inner layer. Cancer usually begins in the bladder's inner layer and can grow deeper into the muscle and fat layer surrounding the bladder. Unfortunately the doctors believe mine has grown through the muscle and fat layers and is suspicious for lymphovascular invasion. The fight is on!