Natural treatment for bladder cancer using herb may soon be alternative therapy option.

Bladder cancer is the fourth most common cancer in U.S. men, and mortality rates are high once this disease has spread to other organs.

There is a promising development in the treatment of bladder cancer, using the herb Boswellia carteri.

From his herb is derived frankincense oil, and it is this oil that’s the center of the new research.

The researchers, led by HK Lin, were interested in whether or not frankincense oil would have an anti-tumor effect on bladder cancer cells.

The researchers are from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and Oklahoma City VA Medical Center.

The scientists worked with two cultures of cells: normal bladder cells and bladder cancer cells, both from humans.

What was discovered was that the frankincense oil could tell the difference between both cultures of cells, and that it could kill the malignant cells.

Not only that, but frankincense oil subdues the growth of the cancerous cells. “Frankincense oil may represent an inexpensive alternative therapy for patients currently suffering from bladder cancer,” says Dr. Lin.

What are the symptoms of this illness? -Change in the color of urine: bright red, dark yellow or cola in color.

However, bright red in the urine can also result from eating beets. Urine that’s dark yellow is a common sign of dehydration.

-Frequent urination as well as painful urination

-Urinary tract infections

-Back pain, and/or abdominal pain

These symptoms don’t always mean bladder cancer. What are the risk factors for this disease? Risk goes up with age, and it’s rare in people under 40, though it can affect people of any age.

For unknown reasons, white people are at higher risk than those of other races. Men are more likely to develop the disease than are women.

Smoking in any form is another risk factor, since toxins from the smoke accumulate in urine and may damage bladder lining.

Another risk factor is exposure to certain industrial chemicals like chemicals used in the manufacturing of rubber and paints.

Additional risk factors for bladder cancer are previous radiation treatment for other tumors; chronic inflammation of the bladder; and family history of this disease. Depending on the stage of the disease, a patient’s entire bladder is removed, and he may need to wear a pouch on his abdomen for the rest of his life, that collects urine, as it comes through a tube created from his intestine that’s inside his body.

Sources: sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090317215312.htm; mayoclinic.com/health/bladder-cancer/DS00177/DSECTION=symptoms