The effectiveness of the Nd-YAG laser in destroying superficial bladder tumours
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Fifty-five bladder tumours, in 12 patients, were treated by coagulation using the neodymium-yttrium aluminium garnet (Nd-YAG) laser. All the tumours were superficial, grade I or II, and varied in size from 5 to 30 mm. Laser energy was applied using a quartz-fibre delivery system via a rigid cystoscope under general anaesthesia. Up to ten tumours were treated at any one cystoscopy. One patient underwent transurethral resection of tumours larger than 30 mm combined with laser coagulation of smaller lesions.
Fifty-four tumours were completely destroyed by the laser. Six patients (50%) had recurrent tumours on review cystoscopies performed one to eight months after the initial treatment. However, only one tumour was found at the site of previous laser coagulation, indicating incomplete tumour destruction. This was successfully eradicated by a further laser coagulation.
Coagulation of superficial bladder tumours with Nd-YAG laser energy during rigid cystoscopy under general anaesthesia is therefore an effective treatment for superficial non-invasive bladder tumours, although the recurrence rate is unaffected.
Key WordsNeodymium-YAG laser Cystoscopy Superficial bladder cancer Recurrence rates
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