Urothelial neoplasm of the bladder in childhood and adolescence: a rare disease

Int Braz J Urol. 2016 Mar-Apr;42(2):242-6. doi: 10.1590/S1677-5538.IBJU.2015.0200.


Purpose: Bladder tumors are rare in children and adolescents. For this reason, the diagnosis is sometimes delayed in pediatric patients. We aimed to describe the diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up methods of bladder urothelial neoplasms in children and adolescents.

Materials and methods: We carried out a retrospective multicenter study involving patients who were treated between 2008 and 2014. Eleven patients aged younger than 18 years were enrolled in the study. In all the patients, a bladder tumor was diagnosed using ultrasonography and was treated through transurethral resection of the bladder (TURBT).

Results: Nine of the 11 patients (82%) were admitted with gross hematuria. The average delay in diagnosis was 3 months (range, 0-16 months) until the ultrasonographic diagnosis was performed from the first episodes of macroscopic hematuria. A single exophytic tumor (1-4cm) was present in each patient. The pathology of all patients was reported as superficial urothelial neoplasm: two with papilloma, one with papillary urothelial neoplasm of low malignant potential (PUNLMP), four with low grade pTa, and four with low grade pT1. No recurrence was observed during regular cystoscopic and ultrasonographic follow-up.

Conclusions: Regardless of the presence of hematuria, bladder tumors in children are usually not considered because urothelial carcinoma in this population is extremely rare, which causes a delay in diagnosis. Fortunately, the disease has a good prognosis and recurrences are infrequent. Cystoscopy may be unnecessary in the follow-up of children with bladder tumors. We believe that ultrasonography is sufficient in follow-up.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Carcinoma, Papillary / pathology*
  • Carcinoma, Papillary / surgery*
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / diagnostic imaging
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / pathology*
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / surgery*
  • Child
  • Cystoscopy / methods
  • Delayed Diagnosis
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hematuria
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Rare Diseases
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ultrasonography
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Urothelium / pathology