Thanks for the response. I have found out that I will either be going to Denver or Salt Lake for the "procedure", still not 100% sure what that entails. As I find out more I will post it here in hopes of other comments and advice.
I am also retired from the Army, but I have Tricare Prime as my insurance and I use civilian hospitals. Although I feel you in many cases can get very good care from a VA Hospital, I would also question their ability to provide the type of surgery you need. You most definately should get a second opinion (once you know where they're sending you to and for what type of procedure), and that second opinion should come from a totally different institution not related to the first. In other words outside of the VA system, if that's at all possible for you to do.
The Bladder Cancer WebCafe is an excellent source of information on the subject of BC, and can refer you to other resources on the subject as well. Most important is for you to get all the information you can, and don't let them frighten you into making a decision before you're ready. Talk to other patients if you have the opportunity, such as on this site, or I understand there's an email discusion group associated with the WebCafe as well from the Home Page.
Keep us informed as to what's happening, we're interested in helping whenever we're able to. Different people respond to different types of questions, as we're none of us in the same situation. But we do want to help, so keep in touch.
I am 43 and retired from the Army and just received word today that I have BC. I really do not know a lot at this point, but my doctor did use terms like: invasive - into the muscle lining - bladder removal and several other terms that I can not recall because of shock. My wife and I are scheduled to speak to the doctor on Friday to get more information. I live in Helena, MT and have been told that the surgery would not be done here but somewhere within the VA system. Can anyone tell me where that might be and if anyone has had the procedures done at that facility and what were your results or thoughts of the treatment? I have concerns about procedures, of course, but more importantly the VA's ability to give me the best options available. I have been going to the VA for many years and am very satisfied with all of the treatment that I have received but this is a little more serious. Any information concerning BC and the VA system would greatly be appreciated.
Thanks in advance!