Non-invasive tumours are more likely to recur, and in some cases they may evolve to become invasive. Depending on the risk assessment of each situation, complementary treatments may be indicated, typically the instillation of drugs within the bladder:
Bacilus Calmette-Guerinn (BCG) therapy is the most common intravesical immunotherapy for the treatment of bladder cancer. It is a bacterium related to the germ that causes tuberculosis, but it does not typically cause serious disease. After administration, the cells of the immune system are attracted to the bladder and activated by BCG, which in turn affects the malignant cells that cause bladder cancer. This is one of the most effective treatments for non-muscle-invasive bladder tumours. It has been shown to reduce the rate of recurrence (reappearance of the tumour after longer or shorter disease-free periods) and the progression of the disease due to its local and systemic immunological effects.
Treatment begins 8 weeks after the patient undergoes a transurethral resection of bladder tumour (TURBT) and lasts for 6 weeks. In specific cases our specialists may indicate the administration of long-term maintenance therapy with BCG.
Opting for this treatment depends on the risk of recurrence and the progression of the disease.
Mitomycin is a type of chemotherapy intended for local use in the bladder which destroys neoplastic cells. It is used on less aggressive tumours and can reduce the rate of recurrence.