Bladder cancer in individuals with spinal cord injuries
Welk B, McIntyre A, Teasell R, Potter P, Loh E.Spinal Cord. 2013 Apr 23.doi: 10.1038/sc.2013.33. [Epub ahead of print]


1] St. Joseph's Health Care, St. Joseph's Hospital, London, ON, Canada [2] Department of Surgery, Division of Urology, Western University, London, ON, Canada.


Study design:Prospective scoping review.Objectives:To conduct a scoping review of all the literature related to bladder cancer in individuals with spinal cord injuries (SCI).Methods:Literature search of the databases Pubmed, CINAHL, ProQuest, PsychINFO and Scopus up to and including August 2012. Articles related to bladder cancer among SCI patients were identified, and data pertaining to epidemiology, risk factors, screening, prevention and management was reviewed and summarized.Results:An association between bladder cancer and SCI was first reported in the 1960s, with some case reports suggesting an alarmingly high rate among SCI patients. More recent epidemiological studies have reported this risk to be substantially lower. However, bladder cancer in SCI patients tends to present at an earlier age and at a more advanced pathological stage than bladder cancer in the general population. Presenting symptoms may be atypical, and early recognition is important to improve prognosis with surgical resection. Several risk factors have been identified, including indwelling catheters, urinary tract infections and bladder calculi. Screening of SCI patients for bladder cancer is routinely recommended in many SCI management guidelines and by expert consensus; however, evidence for screening tools and protocols is lacking.Conclusion:Bladder cancer is a rare, and potentially lethal occurrence in SCI patients. Physicians need to have a high index of suspicion for bladder cancer, particularly among SCI patients managed with long-term indwelling catheters.