Purpose: Ths paper reports a pilot/feasibility trial of neoadjuvant hyperthermic intravesical chemotherapy (HIVEC) prior to transurethral resection of bladder tumour (TURBT) for non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC).
Materials and methods: A pilot/feasibility clinical trial was performed and 15 patients with intermediate to high-risk NMIBC received HIVEC prior to TURBT. HIVEC consisting of eight weekly instillations of intravesical MMC (80 mg in 50 mL) delivered with the novel Combat BRS® system at a temperature of 43 °C for 60 min. Treatment-related adverse effects were measured and patients were followed for 2 years for disease recurrence.
Results: A total of 119 HIVEC treatments occurred. Grade 1 adverse events consisted of irritative bladder symptoms (33%), bladder spasms (27%), pain (27%), haematuria (20%) and urinary tract infection (UTI; 14%). Grade 2 adverse events were bladder calcification (7%) and reduced bladder capacity (7%). No grade 3 or higher toxicity was observed. At TURBT, eight patients (53%) were complete responders (pT0) while seven (47%) were partial responders. With a median follow-up of 29 months, the 3-year cumulative incidence of recurrence was 15%.
Conclusions: The Combat BRS® system achieved target bladder temperatures and delivered HIVEC with a favourable side-effect profile. Our pilot trial also provides preliminary evidence of treatment efficacy.