• Mumbai, India
  • Open 24 x 7

Urinary Bladder Tumor Recurrence : What You Need To Know

Is urinary bladder cancer curable?

It is not easy to answer the question.


Even though early detection of this cancer increases the chances of curability, bladder cancer has a high rate of recurrence, particularly low-grade tumors.

This means that even after successful treatment, the cancer may come back, making long-term curability challenging.

Fortunately, Immunotherapy and Targeted therapy help in preventing the recurrence of urinary bladder cancer. To know what they are, let’s dive deep.

What is Urinary Bladder Cancer? 

is urinary bladder cancer curable

Urinary bladder cancer, also known as bladder cancer, is a type of cancer that starts in the cells of the bladder – a hollow organ located in the lower part of the abdomen that stores urine. The most common type of bladder cancer is urothelial carcinoma, which originates from the urothelial cells that line the urinary tract.

When bladder cancer develops, abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells occurs in the bladder lining. These cancerous cells can form tumors and potentially spread to nearby tissues or other parts of the body

Is Urinary Bladder Cancer Curable? 

Urinary bladder cancer can be curable, especially when diagnosed and treated in the early stages. The curability of bladder cancer depends on various factors such as the stage of the cancer, the extent of tumor spread, and the overall health of the individual.

Early-stage bladder cancers (stages 0 to 1) are almost always curable with timely diagnosis and treatment. Non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer, which is detected at an early stage, can often be cured. 

Surgery is the primary treatment for bladder cancer, and the type of surgery depends on the location of the cancer. Other treatment options, such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy, may be used in combination with or as alternatives to surgery.

However, it is important to note that the prognosis and curability of bladder cancer can vary depending on individual factors and the specific characteristics of the cancer itself. Recurrence of bladder cancer is also a possibility, even in early-stage cases. Therefore, early detection, regular follow-up care, and ongoing monitoring are crucial for long-term outcomes.

Traditional Treatment Options for Urinary Bladder Cancer


Surgery is a common treatment option for urinary bladder cancer. The type of surgical procedure depends on factors such as the stage and location of the cancer. Some of the surgical options include:

  • Transurethral resection of bladder tumor (TURBT): This is a minimally invasive procedure where the tumor is removed using a cystoscope inserted through the urethra. TURBT is commonly used for the diagnosis and treatment of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer.
  • Radical cystectomy: This involves the removal of the entire bladder and nearby lymph nodes. In men, the removal of the prostate and seminal vesicles may also be necessary. 

In women, the removal of the uterus, ovaries, and part of the vagina may be performed. After a radical cystectomy, a new way for urine to leave the body, known as urinary diversion, must be created.

Intravesical Therapy:

Intravesical therapy is a treatment option specifically for non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It involves the delivery of medication directly into the bladder using a catheter. Radiation Therapy:

Radiation Therapy: 

Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to target and kill cancer cells. It may be used as the primary treatment for bladder cancer when surgery is not an option, or it may be used in combination with surgery or chemotherapy. 

External beam radiation therapy and brachytherapy (internal radiation) are common radiation techniques used for bladder cancer.


Chemotherapy drugs can be used to kill cancer cells or to shrink tumors before surgery (neoadjuvant chemotherapy) or after surgery (adjuvant chemotherapy). Chemotherapy may also be used for advanced bladder cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

Advanced Treatment Options for Urinary Bladder Cancer 

Advanced treatment options for urinary bladder cancer may include:

  1. Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy for bladder cancer utilizes drugs known as immune checkpoint inhibitors to enhance the body’s immune system response against cancer cells. These drugs work by blocking specific proteins in immune cells or cancer cells, allowing the immune system to recognize and attack cancer cells more effectively.
  2. Targeted Therapy: Targeted therapy uses special drugs that focus on specific changes in the cancer cells. One way they work is by blocking the activity of something called fibroblast growth factor receptors (FGFR). These receptors are like switches that tell cancer cells to grow. So, by stopping these switches, the drugs slow down the growth of cancer cells. These drugs are especially helpful for bladder cancers with certain changes in their genes.

The Tumour Board of MedicoExperts can help by providing advanced treatment options like immunotherapy and targeted therapy. 

Survival Rate of Urinary Bladder Cancer 

The survival rate of urinary bladder cancer can vary depending on various factors, including the stage of cancer at diagnosis, the individual’s overall health, and the specific characteristics of the cancer cells.

The 5-year relative survival rate for localized bladder cancer ranges from 71% to 96%. For invasive bladder cancer, the survival rates vary. Some studies show a range of 40% to 60% for 5-year survival in invasive bladder cancers. 

Advancement in Diagnosis of Urinary Bladder Cancer

Advancements in the diagnosis of urinary bladder cancer has led to improved detection and more accurate assessment of the disease. 

Some of the advancements in diagnosis include:

  1. Micro-Ultrasound Imaging: High-resolution micro-ultrasound (mUS) techniques have been developed and suggested as an effective method for bladder cancer detection. This technique provides detailed imaging of the bladder wall and can aid in the identification of suspicious areas for further evaluation.
  1. Enhanced Cystoscopy Techniques: Innovative enhanced cystoscopy techniques, such as optical techniques and imaging systems, have been developed. These techniques allow for a more thorough examination of the bladder during cystoscopy, increasing the detection rate of bladder tumors.
  1. Urinary Biomarkers: Several urinary markers have been identified that can aid in the diagnosis of bladder cancer. These biomarkers include genetic alterations, protein markers, and other molecular markers found in urine samples. The use of urinary biomarkers can help in the early detection and surveillance of bladder cancer.
  1. DNA-based Non-invasive Screening: Advances in genetic testing have facilitated the development of non-invasive urine screening tests that can detect genetic alterations associated with bladder cancer. These tests analyze DNA mutations or other genetic changes in urine samples, providing a less invasive option for diagnosing bladder cancer.
  1. MRI Scans: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans are increasingly being used in the diagnosis of bladder cancer. MRI provides detailed images of the bladder and surrounding tissues, allowing for a more accurate assessment of the extent of the disease and identification of potential metastases

Role of MedicoExperts Tumor Board in 

MedicoExperts tumor board is a multidisciplinary team of medical professionals, including oncologists, surgeons, radiologists, pathologists, and other specialists who come together to discuss individual patient cases and develop comprehensive treatment plans. 

The tumor board plays a crucial role in designing novel therapies for urinary bladder cancer by utilizing their collective expertise and knowledge.

Here are some key aspects of the tumor board’s role in designing novel therapies for urinary bladder cancer:

Collaborative Decision-Making: Tumor boards facilitate collaborative decision-making by bringing together experts from different disciplines. 

Treatment Planning: Tumor boards actively participate in treatment planning for patients with urinary bladder cancer. 

Based on the specific characteristics of each case, the board members discuss various treatment options and consider factors such as the stage and grade of cancer, the patient’s overall health, and individual preferences. 

They weigh the benefits and risks of different therapies to determine the most appropriate course of action.

Clinical Trials and Experimental Therapies: Tumor boards are often involved in identifying potential clinical trials and experimental therapies for patients with urinary bladder cancer. 

They stay updated on the latest research and advancements in the field, including novel targeted therapies, immunotherapies, and emerging treatment modalities. 

The board may discuss the suitability of patients for clinical trials and consider innovative approaches that may offer improved outcomes.


Urinary bladder cancer is a significant health concern that affects thousands of people worldwide. It is primarily characterized by the abnormal growth of cells in the lining of the bladder, with urothelial carcinoma being the most common type.

Treatment options may include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and targeted therapies. In some cases, a combination of these treatments may be recommended.

The field of bladder cancer research is rapidly evolving, with ongoing clinical trials and studies focused on developing novel therapies and improving treatment outcomes. These advancements aim to offer more effective and personalized treatment options, minimize side effects, and enhance patient survival rates.

Early detection and timely intervention play a crucial role in improving bladder cancer outcomes. Therefore, individuals need to be aware of the potential risk factors, such as smoking, exposure to certain chemicals, and chronic bladder inflammation. 

Collaboration between medical professionals, such as oncologists, surgeons, radiologists, and pathologists, is vital in the comprehensive management of urinary bladder cancer. Tumor boards often play a significant role in discussing individual patient cases, reviewing diagnostic results, and designing personalized treatment plans.

In conclusion, urinary bladder cancer remains a significant medical challenge, but advancements in research and treatment strategies continue to improve outcomes.

MedicoExperts Tumour Board can help you in overcoming challenges and provide effective treatment. 


Q1. At what stage is bladder cancer not curable?

Ans. Bladder cancer becomes more challenging to cure as it progresses to advanced stages. Typically, when bladder cancer reaches Stage IV, it is considered not curable in the traditional sense. At this stage, the cancer has spread beyond the bladder to distant areas of the body, such as lymph nodes, other organs, or tissues. While curative treatment might not be feasible, the focus shifts to managing cancer, controlling its growth, and improving the patient’s quality of life.
However, it’s important to remember that even at advanced stages, treatment options can provide significant benefits. These treatments aim to prolong survival, alleviate symptoms, and enhance the patient’s well-being.

Q2. Can bladder cancer be stopped?

Ans. Yes, bladder cancer can be treated and managed, and in many cases, it can be stopped or controlled. The success of stopping bladder cancer depends on factors such as the stage of the cancer, its aggressiveness, and the treatment approach used.



Author: Dr. Subhamoy Mukherjee

Dr. Subhamoy Mukherjee, Ph.D. (Oncology) Dr. Subhamoy Mukherjee is a molecular oncologist with experience of working with genomic profiles. He has several years of experience in scientific writing. He takes strong interest in making people aware of different treatment approches in cancer, acute and chronic diseases. He also has interest in innovative approches for treating different mental and physical illnesses.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these <abbr title="HyperText Markup Language">HTML</abbr> tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>


Hi, How Can We Help You?