Perioperative Outcomes following Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy and Radical Cystectomy—Is There Room for Improvement?

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We identify the impact of neoadjuvant chemotherapy before open radical cystectomy on perioperative outcomes and identify actionable areas for improvement.


The impact of neoadjuvant chemotherapy on perioperative outcomes after radical cystectomy for muscle invasive bladder cancer from 2003 to 2014 was assessed using an institutional database. Individual outcomes (venous thromboembolism, surgical site infection, cardiac event) and a composite score using the Clavien-Dindo classification were identified. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression models were used to identify predictors of perioperative complication and 30-day readmission rates.


A total of 241 patients were included in the study, of whom 175 underwent radical cystectomy alone (72.6%) and 66 were treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy plus radical cystectomy (27.4%). The 30-day readmission rate for the neoadjuvant chemotherapy cohort was 30.5% compared to 17.2% for radical cystectomy alone. Multivariable logistic regression analysis identified neoadjuvant chemotherapy as an independent predictor of 30-day readmission (OR 3.47, p=0.01). Of the patients on neoadjuvant chemotherapy readmitted within 30 days 72.2% were readmitted with infections. All other outcomes were not significantly associated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy.


While the administration of neoadjuvant chemotherapy did not significantly increase perioperative complications, patients receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy had an increased rate of 30-day readmission, with infection being the most common etiology. This increased readmission rate has not been previously identified in this patient population to our knowledge and is an important focus for quality improvement.

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