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Bacillus Calmette-Guerin therapy in stage Ta/T1 bladder cancer: prognostic factors for time to recurrence and progression.

Journal article
Authors Patrik Andius
Sten Holmäng
Published in BJU Int
Volume 93
Issue 7
Pages 980-984
Publication year 2004
Published at Institute of Surgical Sciences, Department of Urology
Pages 980-984
Language en
Subject categories Urology and andrology


To report prognostic factors for time to recurrence and progression after bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) prophylaxis in patients with stage Ta/T1 papillary bladder cancer. PATIENTS AND METHODS The clinical records were assessed retrospectively for 236 patients with papillary stage Ta/T1 bladder cancer treated with BCG between 1986 and 2000. Patients with known carcinoma in situ were excluded. The median (range) follow-up was 44 (4–155) months. The effect of 13 variables on the time to recurrence and progression was evaluated using multivariate Cox proportional hazard regression and Kaplan-Meier analyses. RESULTS The recurrence rate was markedly reduced for all grades and stages. Patients with a negative first cystoscopy and maintenance BCG had a significantly longer time to recurrence than those treated with an induction course alone (P < 0.001). Thirty-seven patients (16%) progressed in stage. The result of the first cystoscopy (P < 0.001), tumour grade (P = 0.003) and six or fewer initial instillations (P = 0.002) had prognostic importance for the time to progression. Twenty-eight patients (12%) had a history of an upper tract tumour, which was 3–10 times the expected rate. Age, number of tumours, number of positive cystoscopies, length of tumour history before BCG, BCG strain and treatment year had no influence on time to recurrence and progression. CONCLUSIONS Maintenance treatment does not seem to be necessary among patients with TaG1-G2 disease after a negative first cystoscopy, as the progression rate was very low. One new finding was that BCG seemed to be equally effective among patients with or with no history of an upper tract tumour. Another new and surprising finding was that patients treated with fewer than six induction instillations, because of very bothersome side-effects, had an increased risk of tumour progression and of local failure.

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