Organ-sparing treatment of advanced bladder cancer: A 10-year experience

Juergen Dunst, Rolf Sauer*, Karl M. Schrott, Reinhold Kühn, Christian Wittekind, Annelore Altendorf-Hofmann

*Corresponding author for this work
160 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Radical cystectomy is considered as standard therapy for muscle-invasive bladder cancer. We present 10-year results of bladder-sparing treatment by conservative surgery and radiotherapy ± chemotherapy. Methods and Materials: From 1982 through 1991, 245 consecutive patients, mean age 66 years, with invasive bladder cancer (T2-3 or poor prognostic T1, no distant metastases) entered a prospective protocol with the objective of bladder preservation. Treatment consisted of transurethral resection (complete, if possible) and definitive radiotherapy with 56 Gy maximum dose (50.4 Gy minimum target dose) in 28 fractions. Since 1985, 139 patients received a simultaneous chemotherapy on 5 days in the first and fifth treatment week with either 25 mg/m2 cisplatin daily (79 patients) or 65 mg/m2 carboplatin (60 patients). Cystectomy was performed as salvage treatment for residual or recurrent invasive disease. The median follow-up at the date of analysis (12-31-92) was 5.9 years. Results: The overall survival was 47% after 5 years and 26% after 10 years. The 5-year survival according to the initial T-category was 60% for T1 (44 patients), 64% for T2 (47 patients), 43% for T3 (127 patients), and 16% for T4 (23 patients). The most important single prognostic factor was the amount of residual tumor after TUR (5-year survival 80% after R0, 53% after R1, and 31% after R2 resection, p < 0.01). Chemotherapy increased the rate of complete remission, but had no impact on 5-year survival (52% vs. 50%). Fifty-three salvage cystectomies were performed, all without severe complications, and 192 patients (79%) maintained a normal functioning bladder. The bladder preservation rate in 5-year survivors was 83%. Conclusions: Organ-sparing treatment of advanced bladder cancer by transurethral surgery and definitive radiotherapy or radiochemotherapy is feasible and effective. The survival in this series is as good as in any comparable cystectomy series. Eighty-three percent of long-term survivors maintained their functioning bladders.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)261-266
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 30.09.1994


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