Was this page useful?

*Required Field

Research / UCCRI/ Bladder Portal/ Bladder Cancer/ Causes & Prevention


Bladder Cancer Causes & Prevention

Risk Factors

There are genetic abnormalities and external factors that contribute to the development of bladder cancer.

Genetics: There are some gene variations that have been identified as an association with bladder cancer. Polymorphisms are DNA sequence variations that can occur due to changes in the environment. Polymorphisms of GSTM1 and NAT-2 have been found to lead to a higher risk of bladder cancer.

External Factors:  There is scientific evidence that external factors like carcinogen exposure, smoking, and chemotherapy can increase the risk of bladder cancer.

Carcinogen exposure: In chemical and industrial agencies, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), diesel exhaust and paint substances can increase the chances of bladder cancer through inhalation or skin contact.

Smoking: There is a greater risk of developing any urothelial cancer with smoking. There is more of an increase risk depending on the intensity and duration of smoking.

Chemotherapy: There has been evidence that cyclophosphamide; a chemotherapy agent can increase the risk of bladder cancer. The risk of bladder cancer is dependent on the duration and the intensity that the chemotherapy agent is used.



There are some physical factors you can control to promote your overall health and prevent bladder cancer formation.

Nutrition: A well balanced diet can decrease the risk of any urothelial cancer formation. Incorporating a variety of fruits and vegetables in your diet can decrease the risk of developing urothelial cancer.

Chemical Exposure: Minimizing your exposure to chemical and industrial toxins when possible and using appropriate equipment when exposure is unavoidable.

Smoking: Quitting or decreasing smoking can significantly decrease the risk of urothelial cancer.