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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Urachal cancer


Other Names for this Disease

  • Urachal carcinoma
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Overview

Urachal cancer is a rare type of bladder cancer, making up less than 1% of all bladder cancers.[1] Only about 350 cases have been described in the medical literature to date. The urachus is a primitive structure which before birth connected the bellybutton and the bladder. This connection normally disappears before birth, but in some people remains.[1][2]  Urachal cancers are classified as such based on location at the dome or anterior wall of the bladder and discovery of remnants of the urachus. Most urachal cancers are adenocarcinomas (cancers that develop from gland cells). Others may be sarcomas (which develop from connective tissue - such as leiomyosarcoma, rhabdomyosarcoma, and malignant fibrous histiocytoma), small cell carcinomas, transitional cell cancer, and mixed neoplasias. Most individuals with urachal cancer present with hematuria (blood in urine). Other symptoms may include abdominal pain, a palpable abdominal mass, mucinuria, and bacteriuria.[2] Patients who present with early disease confined to the urachus have a good prognosis when treated with partial cystectomy, umbilicotomy, and urachal resection. The prognosis for those with advanced disease is less promising.[2][3]
Last updated: 12/16/2009

References

  1. Urachal Anomalies. American Urological Association Foundation. 2011; http://www.urologyhealth.org/urology/index.cfm?article=41. Accessed 3/8/2013.
  2. Molina JR, Quevedo JF, Furth AF, Richardson RL, Zincke H, Burch PA. 2007; http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/cncr.23070/full. Accessed 12/16/2009.
  3. Jankowski JT, Cherullo EE, Steinway ML, Feng AH. Cystectomy, Partial. eMedicine. 2008; http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/446101-overview. Accessed 12/16/2009.
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Other Names for this Disease
  • Urachal carcinoma
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.