Early cystectomy for clinical stage T1 transitional cell carcinoma of the bladder

Semin Urol Oncol. 1997 Aug;15(3):154-60.


Early radical cystectomy for a high-grade tumor invading the lamina propria (T1) remains controversial. In 1997, we cannot identify accurately which of these high-risk tumors will progress to muscle-invasive disease and metastases. In the near future, urologists may be able to use the presence of genetic alterations, such as p53 mutations, to help make therapeutic decisions. Previous reports on superficial bladder cancer treated with intravesical bacillus Calmette-Guérin immunotherapy have demonstrated a decrease in recurrence and progression. Unfortunately, there is no reliable method to predict which patients with a high-grade T1 tumor will fail to respond to intravesical therapy. Failure of intravesical therapy to control these aggressive tumors is associated with a significant rate of pathological upstaging and metastases. Radical cystectomy will cure a high percentage of these T1 tumors with acceptable morbidity and low mortality. In an era of nerve-sparing cystectomy and orthotopic neobladder reconstruction, early radical cystectomy is an alternative that should be discussed with the patient before instituting intravesical therapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / therapeutic use
  • Administration, Intravesical
  • BCG Vaccine / therapeutic use
  • Carcinoma, Transitional Cell / mortality
  • Carcinoma, Transitional Cell / surgery*
  • Carcinoma, Transitional Cell / therapy
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Cystectomy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Risk Factors
  • Survival Rate
  • Time Factors
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / mortality
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / therapy


  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • BCG Vaccine