Two instillations of epirubicin as prophylaxis for recurrence after transurethral resection of Ta and T1 transitional cell bladder cancer: A prospective, randomized controlled study

Takashi Saika, Tomoyasu Tsushima, Yasutomo Nasu, Yoshiyuki Miyaji, Michihisa Saegusa, Katsuji Takeda, Hiromi Kumon

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Background: Although transurethral resection (TUR) is the standard treatment for non-muscle-invasive bladder tumors, 40-80% of tumors recur in spite of complete resection. Objective: To evaluate the efficacy, dose effectiveness and safety of early short-duration intravesical instillation therapy using epirubicin (EPI) administered immediately after TUR and on the next day following TUR. Patients and methods: Between 1995 and 2001, 303 patients with Ta and T1 non-muscle-invasive bladder carcinoma were enrolled in this study. Patients were randomized into three groups. Group A patients were treated with two intravesical infusions of EPI 20 mg/40 ml saline immediately after TUR and within 24 h. Group B patients were treated with EPI 50 mg/100 ml on the same schedule as group A. Group C patients were treated by TUR alone as a control group. The primary endpoint was a duration to the first recurrence. Results: Of the 303 patients, 79 in Group A, 84 in Group B, and 77 in Group C could be evaluated for recurrence. Median follow-up was 44 months. Median recurrence-free survival durations for Groups A, B, and C were 24, 38, and 13 months, respectively. The difference between Groups B and C was statistically significant (p = 0.04). Adverse reactions related to instillation were observed in about 30% of the patients. These reactions included micturition pain and frequency. These toxicities were mild and transient. Conclusion: Intravesical instillation of EPI 50 mg twice within 24 h after TUR was effective as prophylactic therapy for non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer with tolerable toxicity problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)413-418
Number of pages6
JournalWorld Journal of Urology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010



  • Administration
  • Bladder
  • Bladder neoplasms
  • Epirubicin
  • Intravesical
  • Local
  • Neoplasm recurrence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology
  • Medicine(all)

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