ACR Appropriateness Criteria® Post-Treatment Surveillance of Bladder Cancer: 2021 Update

J Am Coll Radiol. 2021 May;18(5S):S126-S138. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2021.02.011.


Urothelial cancer is the second most common cancer, and cause of cancer death, related to the genitourinary tract. The goals of surveillance imaging after the treatment of urothelial cancer of the urinary bladder are to detect new or previously undetected urothelial tumors, to identify metastatic disease, and to evaluate for complications of therapy. For surveillance, patients can be stratified into one of three groups: 1) nonmuscle invasive bladder cancer with no symptoms or additional risk factors; 2) nonmuscle invasive bladder cancer with symptoms or additional risk factors; and 3) muscle invasive bladder cancer. This document is a review of the current literature for urothelial cancer and resulting recommendations for surveillance imaging. The American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed annually by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and revision include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer reviewed journals and the application of well-established methodologies (RAND/UCLA Appropriateness Method and Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation or GRADE) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures for specific clinical scenarios. In those instances where evidence is lacking or equivocal, expert opinion may supplement the available evidence to recommend imaging or treatment.

Keywords: AUC; Appropriate Use Criteria; Appropriateness Criteria; Bladder cancer; Muscle invasive bladder cancer; Nonmuscle invasive bladder cancer; Surveillance; Transitional cell carcinoma; Urothelial cancer.

Publication types

  • Practice Guideline
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Carcinoma, Transitional Cell*
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Humans
  • Radiology*
  • Societies, Medical
  • United States
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms* / diagnostic imaging