Aggressive Bladder Cancer Linked to Heavy Smoking

SAN DIEGO—Men who are heavy smokers are at significantly increased risk for muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC) at initial presentation than light and non-smokers, according to a study presented at the American Urological Association 2013 annual meeting.

In a retrospective database analysis from 1987 to 2009, Eugene Pietzak, MD, and colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania Health System in Philadelphia identified 740 patients with bladder cancer. Of these patients, 197 were non-smokers, 251 were light smokers (30 pack/years or less), and 292 were heavy smokers (more than 30 pack/years). Men were more likely to be heavy smokers than women.

Compared with non-smokers and light smokers, heavy smokers were more likely to have higher- grade tumors and more advanced clinical stage and to present with MIBC. Compared with non-smokers, light smokers had an 18% increased risk for MIBC and heavy smokers had a 38% increased risk. After adjusting for gender, heavy smoking was associated with a significantly increased risk of presenting with MIBC in men, but not women.

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