What is small cell carcinoma of the urinary bladder? What are the biologic behaviors of this tumor and its relationship to the conventional urothelial carcinoma?
Small cell carcinoma is a rare, highly aggressive form of urothelial cancer that affects elderly men more often than women. The urinary bladder is the most common site of its development in the urinary tract. The initial manifestation commonly is hematuria. At the time of diagnosis, most of the tumors have invaded the muscularis propria. As the name implies, the tumor is composed of small round or oval cells and occasionally spindle-shaped cells with “salt and pepper” chromatin and inconspicuous nucleoli. The tumors are indistinguishable from metastatic small cell carcinoma of the lung. Most of the tumors express some sort of neuroendocrine markers. The prognosis is dismal regardless of the mode of treatment. Cystectomy versus noncystectomy does not seem to affect the prognosis. Cisplatinum-based chemotherapy may be applied to prolong lives.
KeywordsUrinary Bladder Radical Cystectomy Small Cell Carcinoma Muscularis Propria Lung Small Cell Carcinom
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