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Keywords:

  • superficial bladder carcinoma;
  • multiple sequential recurrences;
  • tumor markers;
  • multivariate survival data

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Although multiple sequential recurrences are one of the most important characteristics of superficial transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) of the bladder, few studies have examined multiple sequential recurrence patterns and the clinicopathologic and biochemical factors associated with these patterns.

METHODS

Two hundred seventy superficial TCC bladder carcinoma patients were followed. Clinical, pathologic, and tumor marker (p53, MIB-1, bcl-2, c-erb B-2, and epidermal growth factor receptor) data were collected at baseline and during followup. The Kaplan-Meier (KM) method was used to describe multiple recurrences. The Wei, Lin, and Weissfeld (WLW) marginal proportional hazards model was used to assess the effects of clinicopathologic and immunohistochemic factors on multiple recurrences.

RESULTS

Among the 270 patients, 126 (46.7%) had one or more recurrences, 38 (14.1%) had two or more recurrences, and 14 (5.2%) had three or more recurrences during the followup. The median times for the first, the second, and the third recurrences were 23 months, 15 months, and 13 months, respectively. In KM analysis, Stage T1, higher grades, and Ki-67 stain positivity were associated with the first recurrence, and p53 stain positivity was marginally significant. Other markers were not significant. For the second recurrence, only p53 stain positivity was significant. In multivariate analysis (WLW method), stage was significantly associated with the first recurrence (risk ratio [RR] = 2.03), and Ki-67 was marginally significant (RR = 1.49). For the second recurrence, only p53 positivity was statistically significant (RR = 2.73).

CONCLUSIONS

Among superficial TCC bladder carcinoma patients, multiple recurrences are common phenomena. The time for recurrence becomes shorter as the number of recurrences increases. In addition to tumor stage and grade, Ki-67 can be used to identify patients at high risk for a first recurrence; and p53 can be used to identify patients at high risk for a second recurrence. Cancer 2002;95:1239–46. © 2002 American Cancer Society.

DOI 10.1002/cncr.10822