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Baselli EC , Greenberg RE
Intravesical therapy for superficial bladder cancer
Oncology (Huntingt). 2000 May;14(5) :719-29; discussion 729-31, 734, 737
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Approximately 54,400 new cases of transitional cell carcinoma of the bladder were reported in the United States in 1999, with an estimated 12,500 deaths attributable to this cancer. Close to 75% of all bladder tumors are confined to the urothelium (stage Ta, or carcinoma in situ), and nearly 30% of papillary tumors invade the lamina propria (stage T1). The majority of superficial tumors are low grade with low rates of progression. Transurethral resection is the standard initial treatment for transitional cell carcinoma. Intravesical therapy is an important adjunct to transurethral resection in patients with superficial bladder cancer, many of whom are at risk for disease recurrence and progression. Cytotoxic and immunomodulating agents and, more recently, photosensitizers have demonstrated utility against superficial transitional cell carcinoma. Many studies have assessed and continue to examine the efficacy of various agents at different doses and in different combinations and schedules. Recently, valrubicin (Valstar) won Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval only for the treatment of refractory carcinoma in situ. However, bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) and mitomycin (Mutamycin) remain the most commonly used, most effective agents available for prophylaxis against recurrence and subsequent progression of superficial bladder cancer. This article reviews traditional and alternative intravesical agents useful in the therapy and prophylaxis of superficial transitional cell carcinoma of the bladder.
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