The Challenge of Managing Bladder Cancer and Upper Tract Urothelial Carcinoma: A Review with Treatment Recommendations from the Spanish Oncology Genitourinary Group (SOGUG)

Target Oncol. 2019 Feb;14(1):15-32. doi: 10.1007/s11523-019-00619-7.


Bladder cancer is the fourth most common cancer in men and the ninth most common in women in the Western world. The management of bladder carcinoma requires a multidisciplinary approach. Optimal treatment depends on several factors, including histology, stage, patient status, and possible comorbidities. Here we review recent findings on the treatment of muscle-invasive bladder carcinoma, advanced urothelial carcinoma, upper tract urothelial carcinoma, non-urothelial carcinoma, and urologic complications arising from the disease or treatment. In addition, we present the recommendations of the Spanish Oncology Genitourinary Group for the treatment of these diseases, based on a focused analysis of clinical management and the potential of current research, including recent findings on the potential benefit of immunotherapy. In recent years, whole-genome approaches have provided new predictive biomarkers and promising molecular targets that could lead to precision medicine in bladder cancer. Moreover, the involvement of other specialists in addition to urologists will ensure not only appropriate therapeutic decisions but also adequate follow-up for response evaluation and management of complications. It is crucial, however, to apply recent molecular findings and implement clinical guidelines as soon as possible in order to maximize therapeutic gains and improve patient prognosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Disease Management
  • Humans
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy*
  • Prognosis
  • Spain / epidemiology
  • Urologic Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Urologic Neoplasms / therapy*