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Advances in bladder cancer imaging

Shaista Hafeez and Robert Huddart*

Author affiliations

The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust and the Institute of Cancer Research, Sutton, Surrey, UK

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Citation and License

BMC Medicine 2013, 11:104  doi:10.1186/1741-7015-11-104

Published: 10 April 2013


The purpose of this article is to review the imaging techniques that have changed and are anticipated to change bladder cancer evaluation. The use of multidetector 64-slice computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) remain standard staging modalities. The development of functional imaging such as dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI, diffusion-weighted MRI and positron emission tomography (PET)-CT allows characterization of tumor physiology and potential genotypic activity, to help stratify and inform future patient management. They open up the possibility of tumor mapping and individualized treatment solutions, permitting early identification of response and allowing timely change in treatment. Further validation of these methods is required however, and at present they are used in conjunction with, rather than as an alternative to, conventional imaging techniques.

Bladder cancer; Diffusion-weighted MRI; Multidetector computed tomography; PET-CT; Staging; Ultrasound; Virtual cystoscopy