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May 8, 2018

Simplifying Treatment and Reducing Recurrence for Patients With Early-Stage Bladder Cancer

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Urology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • 2Department of Urology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 3Department of Epidemiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 4Department of Health Policy and Management, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 5Center for Health Research, Kaiser Permanente Northwest, Portland, Oregon
JAMA. 2018;319(18):1864-1865. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.4656

The burden of bladder cancer in the United States is large and expanding with the aging population; the annual incidence has increased from approximately 50 000 cases per year in the 1990s1 to nearly 80 000 new cases projected for 2017.2 Non–muscle-invasive bladder cancers represent approximately 75% of all incident cases,3 of which the majority are low-grade tumors. Low-grade bladder cancers frequently recur but rarely result in cancer progression or death. In addition to being the most expensive cancer per patient,4 bladder cancer disproportionately affects older patients, with a median age at diagnosis of 73 years, the oldest age at diagnosis of all cancer sites.5 Thus, patients with low-grade bladder cancer often live with this diagnosis as one of multiple chronic conditions.6