No incisions! That’s the good part. The entire procedure is done under general anesthesia (asleep) via the urethra (penis). We now utilize state-of-the-art high definition cameras to visualize the bladder. We then use plasma-vaporization devices to basically remove the bladder tumor.
The best way to think of a bladder tumor is that it is a weed. Just like weeds, there are weeds with superficial roots that you can pluck right out, and there are weeds with deep roots that despite pulling, you can’t completely pull them out.
For superficial tumors, TURBT is often curative (fully treated). For deeper tumors, further treatment is necessary.
For some patients, at the conclusion of the case, we utilize a medicine such as Mitomycin-C (I call it my version of weed-killer) to reduce the chance of bladder tumor recurrence.
TURBT is usually performed in the hospital or outpatient surgical center, and takes approximately 1 hour.