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Intravesical chemotherapy


Non-Muscle Invasive Bladder Cancer (includes Ta, T1, CIS tumors)

Treatment Category:



Intravesical chemotherapy

Suitable for:

Suitable for most people to treat non-invasive bladder cancer, where the cancer has not spread into the muscle wall of the bladder

How it works:

Chemotherapy drugs are put directly into the bladder to kill actively growing cancer cells that are not removed during the TURBT

How it is typically used:
  • Usually given within 24 hours after a TURBT procedure to kill any cancer cells that may be left in the bladder
  • Because it kills cancer cells in the lining of the bladder, it can be used to treat early–stage bladder cancer where the cancer cells have not spread into the muscle wall of the bladder. But it won’t affect cancer cells that have grown beyond the bladder lining, for example in the surrounding tissues or organs
How it is administered:

Liquid medication is put directly into the bladder via a thin tube, called a catheter

Side effects:
  • Irritation and a burning feeling in the bladder
  • Blood in the urine
Is this given with other treatments?

Treatment with intravesical chemotherapy is often given within 6–24 hours following a TURBT procedure

Disclaimer: Information and services provided by the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network (BCAN) are for informational purposes only. The information and services are not intended to be substitutes for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are ill, or suspect that you are ill, seek professional medical attention immediately! BCAN does not recommend or endorse any specific physicians, treatments, procedures or products even though they may be mentioned on this site.

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