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Functional outcomes for patients following bladder-preserving treatment


“We know that with that low toxicity and good functional outcomes, it's an excellent treatment to offer patients,” says Sophia C. Kamran, MD.

In this video, Sophia C. Kamran, MD, discusses the functional outcomes associated with bladder preservation and trimodal therapy. Kamran is a radiation oncologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology at Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

What are the functional outcomes of patients whose bladders remain after undergoing a bladder preserving treatment?

Of course, we're always thinking about that, particularly from a toxicity standpoint and functional standpoint. Thankfully, we also have data that demonstrate from a toxicity standpoint, long-term toxicity is fairly reasonable. This was a study that evaluated multiple RTOG trials and followed them long term for patients who kept their bladder over time and had received bladder-sparing therapy. Patients did very well. In terms of functional outcomes, there was a nice analysis that was published in 2016 looking at health-related quality of life, between patient who underwent radical cystectomy and patients who underwent bladder sparing.1 This was using 6 validated quality of life instruments, and it was found that the bladder-sparing therapy was associated with improved sexual function and improved body image. In addition, the patients had greater informed decision-making scores, and they felt less concerned about the negative effects of cancer. So you can see that overall, from a functional standpoint, they did very well and then they also had just improved body image and sexual function quality of life in that regard as well compared with patients undergoing radical cystectomy. So we know that with that low toxicity and good functional outcomes, it's an excellent treatment to offer patients.


1. Mak KS, Smith AB, Eidelman A, et al. Quality of life in long-term survivors of muscle-invasive bladder cancer. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2016;96(5):1028-1036. doi:10.1016/j.ijrobp.2016.08.023

This transcript was edited for clarity.

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