Bladder Cancer

"The Department of Urology has put into practice, in collaboration with the Department of Medical Oncology, new therapeutic guidelines in bladder tumors".


Bladder cancer can be a high-risk tumor, but curable if treated early. For this, a quick diagnosis is key. 

Bladder cancer is derived from urothelium (mucous membrane in contact with urine). It constitutes 9% of all male cancers and 4% of female tumors. It mainly affects patients over 50 years.

Although in most cases the cause is unknown, in some patients has been associated with exposure to aromatic amines and treatment with systemic cyclophosphamide.

The tobacco habit doubles the risk of suffering from it.

In superficial tumors the prognosis is good: 70-80% survival in 5 years. Overall survival of deep tumors is 40-60% in 5 years.

The prognosis depends on the pathological stage (pT2= 80%; pT3= 50%; pT4: 20%), the presence of affected nodes (10-20% survival in 5 years) and the histological characteristics of the tumor, especially grade and intratumoral vascular infiltration.


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What are the symptoms of bladder cancer?

Hematuria (blood in the urine) is the main sign. It appears in 85% of cases and is usually painless and with clots.

Symptoms of bladder irritation (frequent urination, itching or pain) appear capriciously.

The most common symptoms are:       

  • Hematuria.
  • Urinating many times.
  • Pain or stinging when urinating.

Do you have any of these symptoms?

You may have bladder cancer

How is bladder cancer diagnosed?

Fast track' to diagnose bladder cancer in less than 12 hours

Upon detection of blood in the urine, the Clinic implements a rapid protocol of diagnostic tests for early detection of this tumor. 

The diagnosis includes an ultrasound, cystoscopy if necessary, urine cytology, blood and urine tests and consultation with the specialist.

If necessary, we will schedule a CT scan the following day.

This protocol manages to diagnose bladder tumors in a single day in patients with blood in the urine, achieving early treatment and high success rates.

How is bladder cancer treated?

In the initial stages, treatment is curative and consists of removal of the lesion by cystoscopy or transurethral resection. After analysis of the excised material, an assessment will be made as to whether it is necessary to administer endovesical instillations (directly into the bladder) of chemotherapeutic or immunotherapeutic drugs to prevent recurrences.

In infiltrating tumors, the treatment of choice is radical cystectomy (complete removal of the bladder and prostate, in the case of men). Our Clinic's experience in minimally invasive surgery allows both robotic cystectomy and replacement with a new bladder made of bowel.

Complementary chemotherapy is often used preoperatively to reduce tumor size, eliminate unseen distant metastases that may exist and thus facilitate surgery. Other times, chemotherapy is administered after surgery to eliminate residual tumor cells.

Also, in some cases of infiltrating tumors, when they are unique, the bladder can be preserved. Although it is usual to remove the entire bladder, the Clinic has developed an ambitious program that, through a combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, aims to preserve the bladder with an oncological safety margin while maintaining the patient's quality of life.

In the case of metastatic tumors, immunomodulatory drugs have been developed in recent years, research in which the Clinic has played a very active part. The combination of traditional chemotherapy together with immunotherapy in different lines is now standard practice.

Where do we treat it?


The Department of Urology
of the Clínica Universidad de Navarra

The Department of Urology of the University of Navarra Clinic offers the patient a medical team, composed of first-rate professionals, and state-of-the-art diagnostic and therapeutic means such as the Da Vinci® robotic surgery.

The Department of Urology possesses the certificate of accreditation of the European Board of Urology, a reinforcement of the excellence of the service at the level of care, teaching and research, which in Spain only three hospital centers possess.

Diseases we treat:

Imagen de la fachada de consultas de la sede en Pamplona de la Clínica Universidad de Navarra

Why at the Clinica?

  • A team of top-level professionals trained in international centers.
  • State-of-the-art technology for diagnosis and treatment.
  • In 24-48 hours you can start the most appropriate treatment.

Nuestro equipo de profesionales