PURPOSE - The ratio between orthotopic and non-orthotopic diversions in women is far lower than in male patients. Data on urinary function in female patients with neobladders are therefore sparse.
METHODS - We investigated the urinary function of female neobladder patients utilizing the Bladder Cancer Index, a validated and reliable health-related quality-of-life (HRQOL) questionnaire. Furthermore, we tried to identify preoperative factors that may influence functional results. All living female patients with an orthotopic neobladder (N = 82) from the University of Southern California Bladder Cancer Database were sent a questionnaire including the University of Michigan Bladder Cancer Index. Univariate analyses were performed using the Kruskal-Wallis test followed by a multivariate stepwise regression model.
RESULTS - Fifty-six patients (68.3%) responded and were included in the analysis. Thirty-five (62.5%) of these patients had to catheterize their neobladder to a certain amount, while 25 patients (44.6%) depend on catheterization to empty their neobladder. Univariate analyses showed that patient age (>65 years) was the only variable associated with a statistically significant lower rate of neobladder catheterization. Better urinary bother scores were associated with organ-confined disease (p = 0.038) and education level (p = 0.01). However, these variables were not significant in a multivariate stepwise linear regression model.
CONCLUSION - Considerably more women require urinary catheterization to void than previously reported. In this study, representing the largest investigated cohort in this topic, we were unable to identify any predictors of this outcome or any other urinary HRQOL in this cohort.