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J Urol. 2007 Jul;178(1):62-7. Epub 2007 May 11.

A phase III, multicenter comparison of hexaminolevulinate fluorescence cystoscopy and white light cystoscopy for the detection of superficial papillary lesions in patients with bladder cancer.

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University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas, USA, and L'Hotel-Dieu de Québec, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Québec, Canada.



We compared hexaminolevulinate fluorescence cystoscopy with white light cystoscopy for detecting Ta and T1 papillary lesions in patients with bladder cancer.


A total of 311 patients with known or suspected bladder cancer underwent bladder instillation with 50 ml 8 mM HAL for 1 hour. The bladder was inspected using white light cystoscopy, followed by blue light (fluorescence) cystoscopy. Papillary lesions were mapped and resected for histological examination.


Noninvasive pTa tumors were found in 108 of 196 evaluable patients (55.1%). In 31 patients (29%) at least 1 more tumor was detected by HAL than by white light cystoscopy (p<0.05). Six of these patients had no lesions detected by white light, 12 had 1 lesion detected by white light and more than 1 by HAL, and 13 had multiple Ta lesions detected by the 2 methods. Conversely at least 1 more tumor was detected by white light cystoscopy than by HAL cystoscopy in 10 patients (9%, 95% CI 5-16). Tumors invading the lamina propria (T1) were found in 20 patients (10.2%). At least 1 additional T1 tumor was detected by HAL but not by white light cystoscopy in 3 of these patients (15%), while at least 1 more T1 tumor was detected by white light cystoscopy than by HAL cystoscopy in 1 patient (5%, 95% CI 0-25). Detection rates for Ta tumors were 95% for HAL cystoscopy and 83% for white light cystoscopy (p=0.0001). Detection rates were 95% and 86%, respectively, for T1 tumors (p=0.3). HAL instillation was well tolerated with few local or systemic side effects.


HAL fluorescence cystoscopy detected at least 1 more Ta and T1 papillary tumor than white light cystoscopy in approximately a third of the patients with such tumors. Whether this would translate to improved patient outcomes has yet to be determined.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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