Risk factors, follow-up, and treatment of urethral recurrence following radical cystectomy and urinary diversion for bladder cancer: a meta-analysis of 9498 patients

Xinyuan Li, Wuwan Wang, Gongmin Zhu, Weiyang He and Xin Gou _

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:2782-2796. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.23451

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Xinyuan Li1,*, Wuwan Wang2,*, Gongmin Zhu1, Weiyang He1 and Xin Gou1

1Department of Urology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China

2Department of Cardiology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Xin Gou, email: [email protected]

Weiyang He, email: [email protected]

Keywords: urinary bladder neoplasms; cystectomy; ureteral neoplasms; recurrence; risk factors

Received: May 18, 2017     Accepted: August 26, 2017     Published: December 19, 2017


Purpose: Patients frequently undergo radical cystectomy and urinary diversion for treatment of bladder cancer. However, they remain at risk of urethral recurrence (UR). Studies have determined various risk factors leading to urethral recurrence. However, no publications have weighed the predictive values of these factors.

Materials and Methods: Studies published between 1971 and 2016 were retrieved from PubMed, EMBASE and MEDLINE. We used STATA software (Version 12.0) to estimate the pooled risk ratio.

Results: Twenty-five publications with 9498 patients were included. Overall, male patients, especially those with concomitant carcinoma in situ, superficial or intravesical bladder cancer, non-orthotopic diversion, prostatic involvement, bladder neck involvement, positive urethral margins or multifocal bladder cancer were at higher risk of urethral recurrence. The overall risks of recurrence, reported as risk ratios, varied widely. Among all 25 studies, 118 (60.2%) cases in 9 studies were diagnosed through routine follow-up. Another 82 (40.8%) patients in 11 studies first reported symptomatic abnormalities. Prognoses were worse for patients with symptomatic recurrence. Urethral cytology was the most common diagnostic method. Treatment after UR was reported for 272 cases in 14 publications, and 190 patients underwent urethrectomy and 52 underwent urethra-sparing treatments. Outcomes after UR were described in 12 studies reporting 180 cases, and 41 patients were alive through the end of follow-up and 65 patients died of bladder cancer.

Conclusions: UR following radical cystectomy for bladder cancer was closely related to risk factors. Precautions, strict follow-up protocols and rational therapies were critical to patients with high risks of urethral recurrences.

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