Welcome from another cis patient! Unfortunately, there is a difference in what is called “CIS “in bladder cancer and in other types of cancer. For example, with breast cancer there is even some argument as to whether it should be called “cancer” at all. In the case of bladder cancer it is serious cancer, although often very treatable. It forms sort of like a rash over the surface of the bladder so that is is not removable such as a solid tumor would be. AND IT IS ALWAYS CONSIDERED HIGH GRADE, meaning that it has rapidly dividing cells and is likely to spread.
The good news is that there is an often very effective treatment available, BCG. This is the current standard of treatment for CIS and this is what your urologist should recommend. It has been shown that in the case of high grade bladder cancer an initial series of six BCG instillations followed by a series of maintenance treatments over a period of about two years provides a high level of remission.
BCG is not a lot of fun, but it is very doable and much easier than the traditional chemotherapy that other types of cancer often require. There is a lot of information on this Forum about patients’ experience with BCG. Just use the SEARCH box at the top right of this page. One word of caution...people who experience problems or side effects are more likely to post their experiences than the majority who sail through!
I was diagnosed with CIS over 12 years ago, had the initial and maintenance series of BCG,and have been cancer-free ever since. You can do this too!
Diagnosis 2-08 Small papillary TCC; CIS
BCG; BCG maintenance
Vice-President, American Bladder Cancer Society
Hi all, I'm a new member. My biopsy from my turbt came back with a Carcinoma in Situ diagnosis. My doctor said it was superficial and we caught it early. As far as he could see I had one red spot. He is going to start the BCG treatment next week for 6 weeks then let the bladder calm down and do another cystoscopy to see if it was effective.
I'm trying to learn as much as I can about CIS and BCG. Oddly enough when I check out CIS many sites list it as "abnormal Cells" instead of a cancer. But it looks like it is high risk if it does decide to invade the muscle. So I went from thinking this might not be too bad to thinking this is high risk! I wasn't sure if I should get a second opinion or just go with the planned treatment. It appears this is the standard treatment for CIS. I have also read different views on BCG treatment. Some appear to tolerate it very well with no problems and others have problems with it. I'm also concerned that BCG does not cure CIS all the time. Hopefully there is a back up plan if BCG doesn't work. I would be interested to hear any comments or experiences other folks have had with CIS or BCG. Thanks!