Bladder Cancer Cystectomy

For more invasive bladder cancers, surgeons may remove part of the bladder (a partial cystectomy) or the entire bladder and nearby lymph nodes and adjacent organs (a radical or total cystectomy). If possible, we perform cystectomies using minimally invasive robotic laparoscopy (laparoscopic surgery in which surgeons control robotic arms that hold miniaturized surgical instruments through a few small incisions in the abdomen).

Surgeons perform a partial cystectomy when cancer has invaded just one part of the bladder wall and they perform a radical cystectomy when the cancer has spread farther throughout the bladder. In a radical cystectomy surgeons remove the bladder, nearby lymph nodes, part of the urethra, and nearby organs that may contain cancer cells. In men they may also remove the prostate, seminal vesicles, and part of the vas deferens. Women undergoing radical cystectomy may have the cervix, uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, and a very small part of the vagina removed.