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Volume 12, Issue 5 (September 2010) 12, 766–774; 10.1038/aja.2010.29

Significance of age and comorbidity as prognostic indicators for patients with bladder cancer

Moon Soo Ha, In Ho Chang

Department of Urology, College of Medicine, Chung-Ang University, Seoul 140-757, Korea

Correspondence: Dr In Ho Chang,caucih@caumc.or.kr

Received 27 December 2009; Revised 14 March 2010; Accepted 1 April 2010; Published online 2 August 2010.


The aim of this study was to determine the impact that age and comorbidity status have on both overall and bladder cancer-specific survival of bladder cancer patients. We obtained medical information pertaining to a population of 528 patients with newly diagnosed bladder cancer from Chung-Ang University Hospital cancer registry. The Adult Comorbidity Evaluation-27 (ACE-27) test, which has been previously validated in adult cancer patients, was used to assess comorbidity. We evaluated differences in the demographic and clinical characteristics of included patients, as well as differences in the treatments they received after categorizing them by age. The median age at the time of bladder cancer diagnosis of the entire cohort was 63 years, and the median follow-up time was 97 months. Of the 528 patients who were included in our study, 303 had at least one comorbid condition and 249 died during the follow-up period. When patients were stratified by age, we found that older patients had a higher proportion of severe comorbidities (P < 0.01) than younger patients, and that a lower proportion of them underwent radical cystectomy for invasive bladder cancer (IBC) (P < 0.01). By multivariate analysis, we found that older age was predictive of lower overall survival (OS) and bladder cancer-specific survival (BCSS) rates among patients with superficial bladder cancer (SBC) and of lower OS rates among patients with IBC. We also found that moderate–severe comorbidity status and treatment through a bladder-conserving approach were predictive of lower OS and cancer-specific survival rates among patients with IBC. The disparity between overall deaths and bladder cancer deaths was shown in SBC and increased along with age and higher comorbidity. Age and comorbidity were found to be independent predictive factors of OS and BCSS among bladder cancer patients, and explained the disparity that we observed between overall bladder cancer-specific mortality rates.


age; comorbidity; neoplasm; prognostic indicator; urinary bladder

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