alexa Are nomograms needed in the management of bladder cancer?


Medical & Surgical Urology

Author(s): Nguyen CT

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Bladder cancer has a remarkably variable natural history. Noninvasive, low-grade (TaLG) lesions have a propensity to recur but pose little threat to the patient's longevity. Non-muscle-invasive, high-grade (Ta-TIS-T1HG) lesions can be effectively treated with intravesical BCG, but a subset may progress to muscle-invasive and metastatic bladder cancer. Muscle-invasive cancers (T2-T3) are uniformly lethal if inadequately treated, and subsets of patients benefit from perioperative chemotherapy and some may be adequately treated with bladder preservation strategies. The ability to accurately predict this variable natural history is essential to optimize treatment. At each stage of disease, the prognosis is often influenced by multiple parameters (e.g., tumor grade and stage, age, comorbidity) and treatments (e.g., radical cystectomy vs. BCG), and different endpoints are relevant based on the stage of disease (recurrence for TaLG, progression for Ta-TIS-T1HG, survival for T2-T4a). Historically, prediction of these endpoints for decision-making has been accomplished with physician judgment and/or basic decision aids such as risk classification systems. However, such methods of risk estimation are unable to fully account for the complex tumor biology and behavior of bladder cancer, potentially leading to inaccurate predictions and inappropriate treatment assignment. Nomograms are capable of incorporating multiple variables and generating accurate risk estimates tailored to the individual patient which may greatly facilitate patient counseling and treatment selection. Although their use has become more widespread, bladder cancer nomograms remain a relatively nascent field of study, and further development of novel nomograms that can account for all clinical stages of bladder cancer is needed.

This article was published in Urol Oncol and referenced in Medical & Surgical Urology

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