Author(s): Waidelich R
PURPOSE: Photodynamic therapy is effective in the treatment of superficial urothelial cancer of the bladder. We report our experience with photodynamic therapy for the treatment of upper urinary tract transitional cell carcinoma. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Photodynamic therapy after oral administration of 5-aminolevulinic acid was performed in 4 patients with widespread superficial papillary tumors of the upper urinary tract. RESULTS: Complete remission occurred in 2 patients who remained free of local recurrence at 7 and 17 months of followup. In the other 2 patients residual tiny papillary tumors were found in the distal ureter after photodynamic therapy. These tumors were coagulated with neodymium:YAG laser irradiation. Both patients are disease-free at 24-month followup. CONCLUSIONS: Photodynamic therapy with 5-aminolevulinic acid is a minimally invasive approach for organ preserving treatment of multifocal superficial transitional cell carcinoma of the upper urinary tract.