Predictors of adequate lymph node dissection in patients with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer undergoing radical cystectomy and effect on survival

Bladder Cancer

Lenis AT, et al. Urol Oncol 2020.


INTRODUCTION: Radical cystectomy (RC) is the standard of care for refractory high-risk non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC). We aim to identify predictors of adequate lymph node dissection (LND) in a cohort of NMIBC patients undergoing RC, as well as its impact on clinical outcomes.

METHODS: The National Cancer Database was queried for patients who underwent RC for urothelial cell carcinoma for clinical stage Tis/a/1 N0M0 disease between 2004 and 2013. Patients were stratified by LND: none, inadequate (<10) or adequate (≥10 nodes). Factors associated with LND were analyzed. Inverse-probability weighted propensity score matching was used to assess the impact of adequate LND on overall survival.

RESULTS: The final cohort of 3,226 patients had a median follow-up of 39.0 months, had a mean age of 65.3 years, was 70% male, and was 81% Caucasian. Overall, 16.6% received no LND, 28.5% inadequate LND, and 55.0% adequate LND. Treatment at an academic facility, Charlson-Deyo Comorbidity score of 1, and later year of treatment were significantly associated with adequate LND. Overall survival was significantly higher with adequate LND compared to a matched-cohort of inadequate LND patients (68.7% vs. 60.6% at 5 years, P < 0.01).

CONCLUSIONS: Nearly half of NMIBC patients undergoing RC do not receive an adequate LND, despite an association with increased overall survival. Treatment at an academic facility was associated with increased likelihood of adequate LND. Initiatives to improve adequate LND in this population may be warranted.