“I’ve been fighting non-invasive bladder cancer since January 2016”
Fight bunny seen in Cologne Ehrenfeld – photo by (c) howlzap Cologne

It’s my cancerversary on 13 January – it’s been seven years now “fighting” non-invasive bladdercancer with the help of a team of experts and loved ones – it can’t be done without either!

Unfortunately, it’s returned a total of 6 times usually low grade G1 or 2 but recently also with a (tiny) carcinoma in situ (cis) which is high grade.

It’s been 12 operations – so called transurethral resection of bladder tumour (TURBT) it means they operate through the urethra – (where the pee comes out).

It’s been 12 nerve racking waits for results (usually 3 days as the hospital has a lab except 2020 when it was 10 days). It’s been 12 catheters after the operations from 3 to 7 days depending.

It’s been 2 bladder perforations – this always means that the catheter stays in longer.

It’s been 1 ureter stent because a tumour was too close to the opening – that stayed in for 8 weeks.

It’s been 42 Mitomycin C bladder instillations over three and a half years.

It’s been 24 cystocopies 17 “all clear” or no evidence of disease (NED) and 6 with tumours visible on the tv screen. And the most recent ones showing red patches needing further investigation.

It’s been 7 EMDA Mitomycin C bladder instillations in 2020 and 6 in 2021.

It’s been 6 BCG installations.

It’s been 2 urographies, an MRI and 3 CT scans to examine the kidneys and the ureter, all all clear.

It’s been countless examinations, blood tests and doctors’ appointments and many, many hours waiting.

It’s been some heart wrenching phone calls and conversations with loved ones.

It’s been countless deep hugs of support both real and virtual.

It’s been some amazing messages, cards, calls, flowers, visits and smiles.

It’s been many many deep breaths and will take many many more.

It’s not only cancer we’ve been fighting I’ve also been fighting with myself. Fighting to accept the fact that this kind of cancer returns yet being active and doing as much as I can to prevent it returning. A delicate balance I’m still struggling with.

Deep breaths….I’ll keep you posted. Updated 13 January 2023

Updated 15 January 2021

I’ll be keeping the faith and continuing with EMDA Mitomycin instillations every month for 6 at least and 3 monthly check ups.