Tumor Recurrence May Predict Stage Progression

Appearance of tumor grade 3 or carcinoma in situ bladder cancer also linked to stage progression

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Frequency of tumor recurrence is a predictor of subsequent stage progression in patients diagnosed with nonmuscle invasive bladder cancer, according to a study published in the February issue of The Journal of Urology.

Nobuyuki Tanaka, M.D., Ph.D., from the Keio University School of Medicine in Tokyo, and colleagues examined data from 484 patients diagnosed with nonmuscle invasive bladder cancer from 1985 to 2006. Patients were followed for an average of 7.2 years. Investigators determined whether frequency of tumor recurrence was associated with subsequent stage progression.

The investigators identified 40 patients who experienced stage progression during the follow-up period. Subsequent stage progression could be most strongly predicted in those patients who had a recurrence rate of one or more per year in the first two years. Those patients had a 10-year progression-free survival rate of 58 percent compared to 93.3 percent in other patients. The appearance of tumor grade 3, carcinoma in situ, and a recurrence rate of one or more per year during the first two years were independent risk factors for subsequent stage progression.

"This predictive information may lead to the development of more appropriate follow-up protocols for evaluating subsequent stage progression and the timing of more aggressive treatment, such as total cystectomy," the authors write.

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