Neobladders: Clinical management and considerations for patients receiving chemotherapy

Gregory A. Broderick, Anthony R Stone, Ralph W deVere White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Continent catheterizable urinary reservoirs and orthotopic bladder substitutes are complex surgical endeavors. The goal is preservation of renal function, reliable continence, and storage intervals acceptable to the patient. The construction requires familiarity with bowel segments and may increase operative time for radical cystoprostatectomy by 30% to 50%. Patients with continent reservoirs have improved body image, work habits, and sexual and interpersonal relationships. Experience with patients with dysfunctional neurogenic bladders previously converted to Bricker urostomies now undiverted to continent reservoirs indicates an overall increase in physical activity and self-satisfaction. These patients are tolerant of reoperations to maintain independence from wet urostomies.45 45 Boyd SD, Feinberg SM, Skinner DG, et al: Quality of life survey of urinary diversion patients: Comparison of ileal conduits versus continent Kock ileal reservoirs. J Urol 138: 1386-1389, 1987. Undoubtedly, the expectations of bladder cancer patients will differ from those of young adults with neurogenic bladder, but we have found that when all options are presented patients will seek out therapy that least alters their body image. Therefore, patient selection becomes an important factor in determining the success of continent reservoirs. Patients must have the dexterity and motivation to catheterize the urinary reservoir, irrigate for mucus and, in cases of orthotopic bladder replacement to urethra, accept the need for artificial sphincter placement in 30% to 40% of cases. Management of the neo-bladders requires additional consideration of several practical and theoretic points for both the surgeon and medical oncologist: 1. 1. Patients with diffuse carcinoma in situ or transitional cell carcinoma at the bladder neck or prostatic urethra should undergo simultaneous urethrectomy excluding orthotopic bladder replacement. 2. 2. Ten percent to 40% of patients undergoing radical cystoprostatectomy for transitional cell cancer will have concomitant undiagnosed adenocarcinoma of the prostate; patient prognosis will remain defined by the stage and grade of the bladder cancer.46 46 Androulakakis PA, Schneider HM, Jacobi GH, Hohenfellner R: Coincident vesical transitional cell carcinoma and prostate carcinoma. Br J Urol 58:153-156, 1986. 3. 3. Patients may have a tendency toward dehydration because of increased loss of free water through bowel transit. 4. 4. Absorption of chloride, ammonium, and hydrogen ions may cause hyperchloremic acidosis, especially in face of impaired renal function. 5. 5. Because of the potential for drug absorption across reservoir mucosa, patients receiving chemotherapy may require Foley catheterization with irrigation in addition to intravenous hydration. 6. 6. Creatinine clearance is unsuitable for studying the renal function of reservoir patients because urine passes through the intestinal segment where creatinine is absorbed; glomerular filtration is better estimated by nuclear scanning with the reservoir emptied. 7. 7. Most reservoirs will remain colonized with bacteria. 8. 8. Antibiotic prophylaxis for the patient with temporary impairment of immune function during chemotherapy may be necessary. 9. 9. Mucus may entrap bacteria serving as a host defense; its production may diminish with time from construction. All patients should be capable of performing reservoir irrigations to manage mucus obstruction. 10. 10. To date, there have been no reports of implantation of transitional cell carcinoma in continent reservoirs, but spread to Bricker urostomy has been described. Visual surveillance of bladder substitutions will require flexible endoscopy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)598-605
Number of pages8
JournalSeminars in Oncology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


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