Association between perioperative glucocorticoids and cancer metastasis and survival in patients undergoing radical cystectomy for urothelial carcinoma of the bladder: A single-center retrospective study

Bladder Cancer

Mao S, et al. Investig Clin Urol 2020.


PURPOSE: Perioperative glucocorticoids have the potential to increase the risk of tumor metastasis. However, the relationship between perioperative glucocorticoids and oncologic outcomes remains controversial. The present study was undertaken to evaluate the association of perioperative glucocorticoids with clinicopathologic outcomes following radical cystectomy (RC).

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We screened and included 185 patients who underwent radical surgery for bladder cancer in our center between 2009 and 2018. The Kaplan-Meier method was applied, and a log-rank test was used to estimate differences in metastasis-free survival (MFS) and overall survival (OS) between the groups. Multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression models were used to analyze any association of glucocorticoids with clinical outcomes.

RESULTS: A total of 76 (41.1%) patients received perioperative glucocorticoids. Median postoperative follow-up was 2.0 years. Kaplan-Meier survival curve indicated that the glucocorticoids group was significantly associated with increased distant MFS (p=0.008) but not with OS. In the multivariate analysis, no significant differences were observed for MFS between the groups. Interestingly, when the variable of blood transfusion was excluded from the multivariate analysis model, we found that patients receiving glucocorticoids were independently associated with worse MFS (hazard ratio, 1.790; p=0.030). Furthermore, the partial correlation analysis showed a significant positive correlation between perioperative glucocorticoids and blood transfusion (r=0.604, p<0.001). In the nontransfusion subgroup, propensity score matching showed that patients receiving glucocorticoids had a higher risk of distant metastasis.

CONCLUSIONS: Perioperative glucocorticoids were associated with a higher rate of distant metastasis in patients undergoing RC for bladder cancer.