Background: Lymph node dissection (LND) with radical cystectomy (RC) for surgical treatment of invasive urothelial carcinoma of the bladder can improve staging and has possible therapeutic benefit. The aim of this study was to assess utilization and extent of LND with RC at our institution and determine its impact on oncological outcomes.
Methods: Using surgical databases and hospital coding, clinical and histopathological characteristics of 87 patients who underwent RC at Austin Health between 2004 and 2011 were retrospectively analysed. Associations of predictor variables with LND use and lymph node (LN) status were analysed using logistic regression. Survival analyses were undertaken using Cox proportional hazard models.
Results: Fifty-eight (65.9%) patients underwent LND, with a clear trend over time in the proportion of patients undergoing LND (three of seven in 2004 up to 10 of 10 in 2011, P < 0.001) and the median (range) of LN yield from five (2-19) in 2004 to 18 (7-35) in 2011 (P < 0.001). Year of treatment was the only significant predictor (univariately and multivariately) of a patient undergoing LND. Multivariately, a significant association with nodal metastases was found for cN stage and planned extent of LND preoperatively, and pT stage postoperatively. LN status was associated significantly with recurrence-free survival with best outcomes in patients who were node-negative on a pelvic LND. A similar trend was seen for cancer-specific survival (P = 0.053).
Conclusions: Over the study period, there was an increase in the use of pelvic LND and LN numbers retrieved during RC. LN status appears to impact on recurrence-free survival, and possibly cancer-specific survival.
Keywords: bladder cancer; lymphadenectomy; recurrence; survival; time trend.
© 2014 Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.