Recently I saw a news special on one of the major networks about Stem-Cell research and they said in France they had successfully grown 10 bladders and transplanted them into grown humans. It is in the early stages but think that not long ago Neo-Bladders like mine were not done and so hope does exist!
One scientist developing the process specifically mentioned bladder cancer patients when he talked of who could benefit in the future, if the technology is successful. So hopefully it's not just children with Spina Bifida who would benefit.
From what I've read, the problem with the new bladders is the patients still have to use a catheter. But they hope to solve this problem too. This would theoretically make a better neo bladder or pouch than colon tissue since the colon tissue is considered too absorptive (is that a word?)
It's amazing what they are doing now. Last year I needed extensive gum grafting but didn't have the tissue for a transplant, so they sewed in a cellular matrix (donor tissue) into my remaining gums and then over 3 months my body took over the matrix and grew gum (cells)... quite a dramatic change. I had no idea that was possible.
That was an interesting article--I remember well, and just looked it up to remind myself what exactly it said.
One huge difference between the children and us is that the children received bladders grown from their own bladder cells. Our own bladders are not, of course, good candidates for cell-harvesting since we have already been diagnosed with bladder cancer.
The last I read about the lab grown bladder was it was not a good bladder. It may have a bladder shape but does not function well enough. It is good to have research into bladder replacements however I think this route will take quite a few years.