Timeline of Bladder Cancer

Below is a timeline of bladder cancer, describing major discoveries and advances in the treatment of this disease. These advances are restricted to conventional oncology. Integrative and holistic oncology are usually not considered given the difficulty of testing these alternative modalities with the double blind randomized control trial model, which is crafted especially for drugs and the like. (See the Institute’s File on the Issue of Evidence).

Year/period Key developments
19th century The cytoscope develops. The first cystectomy for bladder cancer is performed.
1940s–1960s Urine cytology emerges as a tool to detect recurrent bladder and urinary tract cancers.[1]
1970s Cigarette smoking is linked to bladder cancer risk. First chemotherapy drug is released for bladder cancer.[1]
1980s Mitomycin chemotherapy is consolidated. Surgical advances improve bladder cancer survival. First successful combination chemotherapy for advanced bladder cancer is achieved.[1]
1990s Surgical techniques consolidate. New chemotherapies emerge to treat bladder cancer.[1]
2000s New chemotherapies prove to extend survival against bladder cancer. CT scan improves bladder cancer detection.[1]
Recent years As of 2010, bladder cancer resulted in 170,000 deaths up from 114,000 in 1990 worldwide.[2] Current treatment options for people with bladder cancer can include surgery, intravesical therapy, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and immunotherapy.[3]


Year/period Type of event Event Location
1854 Discovery Inverted papilloma (a tumor that may occur in the bladder and other components of the urinary tract) is first described.[4]
1877 Development German urologist Maximilian Nitze develops the cystoscope, a device used to perform endoscopy of the urinary bladdervia the urethra.[5]
1887 Treatment The first cystectomy for bladder cancer is performed.[5] Cologne, Germany
1895 Discovery Link between bladder cancer and environmental carcinogens is first postulated.[6]
1902 Organization The American Urological Association is founded.[7] Linthicum, Maryland, United States
1903 Treatment Radium is first used to treat bladder tumors.[5] United States
1911 Discovery Schistosomiasis is first linked to urinary bladder cancer.[8] Egypt
1929 Discovery Research notes that patients with tuberculosis have lower rates of cancer when examined at autopsy. This observation is among the first to link the possibility of bladder cancer treatment with BCG.[9]
1945 Development Urine cytology (a test used to diagnose urinary tract cancers) is first described.[10]
1952 Discovery Transitional cell carcinoma in situ of the bladder is first described.[11]
1956 Treatment Early bladder removal surgery is introduced. This include surgically removing the bladder (cystectomy) and surrounding tissue where cancer is most likely to spread.[12]
1974 Discovery Research ties sharp increase in bladder cancer deaths among British men to the rapid rise in cigarette smoking during prior decades.[1] United Kingdom
1978 Treatment United States FDA approves the first chemotherapy drug cisplatin for bladder cancer.[13] United States
1980–1985 Treatment Reconstructive bladder surgery is found to improve quality of life. Surgeons begin to offer a neobladder to select patients needing surgery (cystectomy) for bladder cancer. This procedure provides a functional replacement for the bladder using tissue fashioned from the small bowel that allows the passage of urine through the urethra.[1]
1982 Discovery Micropapillary bladder cancer (a rare and aggressive variant of urothelial carcinoma) is first described.[14]
1985 Treatment Neoadjuvant chemotherapy combining methotrexate, vinblastine, doxorubicin, and cisplatin (MVAC) is first described. MVAC is one of the most active chemotherapy regimens for bladder cancer.[15]
1985–1989 Treatment Researchers map out the nerves surrounding the bladder and prostate and develop a new surgical technique that spares key nerves involved in male sexual function, thus preserving it.[16]
1987 Treatment Implant treats bladder cancer without surgery. The procedure involves implanting radioactive sources into cancerous tumors within the bladder.[17] United States
1988 Discovery Intravesical chemotherapy using mitomycin is found to reduce risk of bladder cancer’s return.[18]
1990 Treatment United States FDA approved the use of live bacterium, bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) for superficial bladder cancer. BCG immunotherapy helps reduce the risk of bladder cancer recurrence by stimulating an immune response that targets the bacteria as well as any bladder cancer cells.[19] United States
1997 Treatment Introduction of combination therapy using both radiation and cisplatin chemotherapy together, is found to be a new treatment alternative for patients with advanced bladder cancer who are older or otherwise unable to undergo bladder surgery.[20]
2000 Treatment New chemotherapy combination regimen using gemcitabine together with cisplatin is found to be comparably effective but has relatively fewer side effects than standard MVAC therapy.[21]
2002 Report Approximately 356,000 new bladder cancer cases worldwide are reported.[22]
2003 Treatment Research demonstrates that giving chemotherapy before bladder surgery improves survival for patients whose cancer has not spread significantly beyond the bladder, compared with surgery alone.[23]
2009 Organization Bladder Cancer Canada is formed as a patient advocacy organization dedicated to bladder cancer issues.[24] Canada
2016 Discovery Study suggests that alterations in the extracellular matrix (ECM) microenvironment of the bladder, especially type I collagen, may contribute to bladder cancer progression.[25] Houston, Texas, United States
2016 Development New technology helps doctors detect cancerous tumors in the bladder that are invisible to the naked eye.[26] Murray, Utah, United States

 To check out the Holistic Approach to Cancers in general and Bladder cancer in particular, consider scheduling a coaching session. This approach does have evidence to support it, but not in terms of the conventional model.

Text under construction


  1.  “Timeline”. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  2. ^ Lozano, R; et al. (15 December 2012). “Global and regional mortality from 235 causes of death for 20 age groups in 1990 and 2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010″. Lancet. 380 (9859): 2095–128. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(12)61728-0. PMID 23245604.
  3. ^ “Bladder cancer treatment”. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  4. ^ Wood, JW; Casiano, RR (2012). “Inverted papillomas and benign nonneoplastic lesions of the nasal cavity”. Am J Rhinol Allergy. 26 (2): 157–63. doi:10.2500/ajra.2012.26.3732. PMC 3906506. PMID 22487294.
  5.  “BLADDER CANCER”. Retrieved 28 September 2016.
  6. ^ “Guideline for the Management of Nonmuscle Invasive Bladder Cancer: (Stages Ta, T1 and Tis: Update (2007)”. Retrieved 28 September 2016.
  7. ^ “History of the AUA”. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  8. ^ Zaghloul, Mohamed S. (December 2012). “Bladder cancer and schistosomiasis”. Journal of the Egyptian National Cancer Institute. 24 (4): 151–159. doi:10.1016/j.jnci.2012.08.002. PMID 23159285.
  9. ^ Fuge, O; Vasdev, N; Allchorne, P; Green, JS (2015). “Immunotherapy for bladder cancer”. Res Rep Urol. 7: 65–79. doi:10.2147/RRU.S63447. PMC 4427258. PMID 26000263.
  10. ^ Griffiths, T. R. L. (2013). “Current perspectives in bladder cancer management”. International Journal of Clinical Practice. 67 (5): 435–448. doi:10.1111/ijcp.12075. PMID 23137019.
  11. ^ “BCG Immunotherapy for Transitional-Cell Carcinoma in Situ of the Bladder”. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  12. ^ Paquin, Albert J.; Marshall, Victor F. (1956). “A technique for radical total cystectomy”. Cancer. 9 (3): 585–595. doi:10.1002/1097-0142(195605/06)9:3<585::AID-CNCR2820090325>3.0.CO;2-Z.
  13. ^ “The “Accidental” Cure—Platinum-based Treatment for Cancer: The Discovery of Cisplatin”. 2014-05-30. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  14. ^ Heudel, Pierre; El Karak, Fadi; Ismaili, Nabil; Droz, Jean-Pierre; Flechon, Aude (2009). “Micropapillary bladder cancer: a review of Léon Bérard Cancer Center experience”. BMC Urology. 9: 5. doi:10.1186/1471-2490-9-5. PMC 2713271. PMID 19534791.
  15. ^ Sternberg, CN; Apolo, AB (2014-05-12). “Everything Old Is New Again! Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy in the Treatment of Muscle-Invasive Bladder Cancer”. Journal of Clinical Oncology. 32 (18): 1868–1870. doi:10.1200/JCO.2014.55.4055. PMID 24821880.
  16. ^ Schlegel, PN; Walsh, PC (1987). “Neuroanatomical approach to radical cystoprostatectomy with preservation of sexual function”. J Urol. 138 (6): 1402–6. doi:10.1016/s0022-5347(17)43655-x. PMID 3682067.
  17. ^ “Implant treats bladder cancer without surgery”. Gainesville Sun.
  18. ^ van der Meijden, AP; DeBruyne, FM (1988). “Treatment schedule of intravesical chemotherapy with mitomycin C in superficial bladder cancer: short-term courses or maintenance therapy”. Urology. 31 (3 Suppl): 26–9. PMID 3126592.
  19. ^ “Bladder Cancer”. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  20. ^ James, Nicholas D.; Hussain, Syed A.; Hall, Emma; Jenkins, Peter; Tremlett, Jean; Rawlings, Christine; Crundwell, Malcolm; Sizer, Bruce; Sreenivasan, Thiagarajan; Hendron, Carey; Lewis, Rebecca; Waters, Rachel; Huddart, Robert A. (2012). “Radiotherapy with or without Chemotherapy in Muscle-Invasive Bladder Cancer”. New England Journal of Medicine. 366 (16): 1477–1488. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1106106. PMID 22512481.
  21. ^ “Gemcitabine and Cisplatin Versus Methotrexate, Vinblastine, Doxorubicin, and Cisplatin in Advanced or Metastatic Bladder Cancer: Results of a Large, Randomized, Multinational, Multicenter, Phase III Stud”. Retrieved 29 September2016.
  22. ^ Ploeg, M; Aben, KK; Kiemeney, LA (2009). “The present and future burden of urinary bladder cancer in the world”. World J Urol. 27 (3): 289–93. doi:10.1007/s00345-009-0383-3. PMC 2694323. PMID 19219610.
  23. ^ International Collaboration of Trialists; the European Organisation for Research Treatment of Cancer Genito-Urinary Tract Cancer Group; the Australian Bladder Cancer Study Group; the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinical Trials Group; Finnbladder, Norwegian Bladder Cancer Study Group; Club Urologico Espanol de Tratamiento Oncologico Group (2011-04-18). “International Phase III Trial Assessing Neoadjuvant Cisplatin, Methotrexate, and Vinblastine Chemotherapy for Muscle-Invasive Bladder Cancer: Long-Term Results of the BA06 30894 Trial”. Journal of Clinical Oncology. 29 (16): 2171–2177. doi:10.1200/JCO.2010.32.3139. PMC 3107740. PMID 21502557.
  24. ^ “Bladder Cancer Canada”. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  25. ^ “Bladder Cancer Progression Linked to Collagen Changes”. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  26. ^ “New technology detects bladder cancer that even doctors can’t see”. Retrieved 29 September 2016.