Effect of a pT0 cystectomy specimen without neoadjuvant therapy on survival




In some cases of radical cystectomy for bladder cancer, no residual tumor is found in the cystectomy specimen (the pT0 classification). The aim of this study was to evaluate the outcome of such patients in a large cystectomy series.


All 900 patients with radical cystectomy and pelvic lymphadenectomy for TCC of the bladder in the period January 1986 to September 2003 who received no neoadjuvant therapy were included. Cystectomy specimens from 181 (20.1%) patients were graded as pT0. Complete follow-up was obtained in all cases. Tumor-specific survival (pT0 vs. pT+) was calculated with the Kaplan–Meier method and compared with the log-rank test.


The rate of lymph node metastases in the pT0 group was 6.6%. pT0 status was found with Ta/is/1 in 36.8%, T2a in 41.8%, and T2b in 10.9%. The 169 patients with pT0pN0 tumors had 10-year tumor-specific survival rates of 91.0. There was no statistically significant survival benefit for pT0pN0 tumors compared with pT+pN0 tumors for maximal tumor classifications of pTa/pTis/pT1 and pT2b, but patients with a pT0T2apN0 tumor had a statistically significantly better tumor-specific survival than those with a pT2apN0 tumor (P = 0.002). No patient with a pT0pN0 tumor had a local recurrence. The rate of incidental second primary malignancies in a specimen was 15.5%.


A pT0pN0 cystectomy specimen indicates a curative therapy, but there is a substantial risk of tumor recurrence. In the group of tumors with a maximal classification of pT2a, the pT0 tumors constitute a subgroup with a significantly higher likelihood of survival. Cancer 2005. © 2005 American Cancer Society.