The use of perioperative chemotherapy in patients undergoing radical cystectomy for bladder cancer in Quebec, Canada, 2000–2016


  • Michel D. Wissing McGill University
  • Wassim Kassouf
  • Simon Tanguay
  • Armen G. Aprikian



urinary bladder neoplasms, bladder cancer, neoadjuvant therapy, adjuvant chemotherapy, radical cystectomy, survival


Introduction: Despite its proven benefit, studies have reported poor use of perioperative chemotherapy (POC) in bladder cancer patients undergoing radical cystectomy (RC). We evaluated POC use in Quebec between January 2000 and September 2016.

Methods: Using provincial health administrative databases, data were retrospectively collected from patients from two years before RC until December 2016 or death. Logistic regression was used to identify variables predicting POC use. Survival analyses were conducted using Cox regression. Analyzed covariates were age, sex, comorbidities, year of RC, residence and hospital region, distance to hospital, hospital type and size, and hospital’s and surgeon’s RC volume.

Results: A total of 790/4656 patients (17.0%) received POC. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) use increased in recent years: 3.5% (2009), 11.2% (2012), and 20.7% (2015). POC use was increased in patients with recent surgery, a younger age, less comorbidities, residing closer to the hospital of surgery, and a high surgeon’s RC volume (p<0.05). For patients treated between 2013 and 2016, a younger age (odds ratio [OR] 0.71; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.64–0.80 per five years), shorter distance to the hospital (OR 0.88; 95% CI 0.77–0.99 per 50 km), surgery in an academic hospital (OR 1.86; 95% CI 1.06–3.29), and recent surgery (OR 1.34; 95% CI 1.14–1.58 per year) independently predicted NAC use. These NAC users had a significantly higher overall survival rate than patients without POC (hazard ratio 0.73; 95% CI 0.55–0.97). Limitations include missing data on pathological staging.

Conclusions: NAC/POC use increased in Quebec but was lower compared to most developed countries. Its use was lower in patients residing further from the hospital and in those treated in non-academic hospitals.


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How to Cite

Wissing, M. D., Kassouf, W. ., Tanguay, S. ., & Aprikian, A. G. . (2019). The use of perioperative chemotherapy in patients undergoing radical cystectomy for bladder cancer in Quebec, Canada, 2000–2016. Canadian Urological Association Journal, 14(5), E191–201.



Original Research