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Bladder Cancer Deemed Rare in Men With Microhematuria

Study calls into question professional guidelines calling for intensive follow-up for MH patients

TUESDAY, Jan. 5 (HealthDay News) -- The eventual development of bladder cancer in men who test positive for asymptomatic microhematuria (MH) is less than 1 percent, calling into question professional guidelines recommending intensive follow-up evaluation for bladder cancer in such patients, according to a study in the January issue of Urology.

Ralph Madeb, M.D., of the University of Rochester in New York, and colleagues studied 234 men aged 50 years or older who had positive tests for asymptomatic MH and were evaluated for bladder cancer with negative results. The researchers tracked the group's outcomes for 14 years using tumor registry records and death certificates, and compared their outcomes to the outcomes for men who did not test positive for MH. The study results were used to assess American Urological Association guidelines for patients with asymptomatic MH that currently call for repeat urinary cytologies, urinalyses, and office visits for a number of years to check for bladder cancer.

The researchers found that two of the 234 men (0.85 percent) with positive MH tests developed bladder cancer at years 6.7 and 11.4 following their initial negative bladder cancer evaluations. In comparison, 0.93 percent of subjects who tested negative for MH were later diagnosed with bladder cancer.

"Patients who have negative complete evaluations for asymptomatic MH have little chance of subsequently developing bladder cancer. The recommended 'appropriate' follow-up for these patients may require reconsideration in light of these data," the authors conclude.

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