Purpose: Interest has emerged in urinary biomarkers to replace or alternate with followup cystoscopies for routine bladder cancer surveillance. We assessed whether patients would accept a urine biomarker assay over flexible cystoscopy for monitoring bladder cancer. Materials and Methods: We enrolled 200 consecutive patients previously diagnosed with superficial bladder tumors who were undergoing outpatient flexible cystoscopy as followup. Immediately after cystoscopy each patient completed a pain intensity numerical rating and was interviewed. The standard gamble method was applied to determine the minimal accepted diagnostic accuracy at which a urine test would be favored over cystoscopy for bladder surveillance. Clinical and demographic data with potential to affect patient preferences were analyzed. Results: Of the 200 patients 75% would accept the results of a urine test as a replacement for cystoscopy only if it was capable of detecting more than 95% of recurrent bladder tumors and an additional 21% would accept it if the urine test was at least 90% to 95% accurate. Anxiety associated with the possibility of missing cancer was the major determinant of the minimal accepted accuracy. While male gender and higher pain intensity at cystoscopy were associated with willingness to accept a small level of uncertainty on univariate and multivariate analyses, the risk of progression to muscle invasion and the convenience of followup did not appear to affect patient preferences. Conclusions: From the patient perspective a urinary biomarker would likely require 95% or greater diagnostic accuracy to supplant cystoscopies for routine bladder surveillance. Inadequate sensitivity may be the major impediment to general acceptance of urinary biomarkers in this setting.
- bladder neoplasms
- tumor markers