Laser ablation of bladder cancer is a procedure performed for the treatment of superficial bladder tumors. With the use of a cystoscope, small tumors within the bladder are treated with a laser to kill the cancer cells.
- Superficial bladder tumor
- Recurrent small bladder tumors
The patient lies on a procedure table on his or her back, and the opening of the urethra is cleaned and anesthesia given. A cystoscope is then placed into the urethra and bladder, allowing the doctor to examine the inner lining of the bladder. A biopsy of the bladder tumors is then performed, and a laser fiber is used to ablate any cancer cells in the area of the tumor. The bladder is then drained, the procedure completed, and the patient taken to the recovery area.
Most patients will experience some slight burning with urination or pass a small amount of blood for the first 24 hours after the procedure. If the burning persists longer than 24 hours, or the patient has heavy bleeding or passage of clots, a fever over 101°, or is unable to urinate, please contact us. The natural history of bladder cancer is that it will often recur, and laser ablation is not a permanent cure for bladder cancer. All patients with bladder cancer should undergo scheduled surveillance, and it is not uncommon for patients to need repeat treatments or other additional therapies over the years.