Transurethral Resection of a Bladder Tumor (TURBT)

Bladder Tumor Resection, also known as a Transurethral Resection of a Bladder Tumor (TURBT), is a surgical procedure used to diagnose, stage, and treat bladder tumors, particularly those that are suspected to be cancerous. Bladder tumor resection is the most common procedure used to treat early-stage bladder cancer.

Here's an overview of the procedure:


  • Diagnostic TURBT: One of the primary purposes of TURBT is to diagnose bladder tumors. It involves the removal of a small piece of tissue (biopsy) from the bladder lining for examination under a microscope. This helps determine if the tumor is cancerous, its stage, and its type.
  • Therapeutic TURBT: In cases where the bladder tumor is small and localized, TURBT can also be used as a treatment method to remove the tumor. For more advanced bladder cancer, additional treatments, such as chemotherapy, immunotherapy, or radiation therapy, may be required.



  • TURBT is typically performed under general or regional anesthesia. The patient may be positioned in a lithotomy (legs-up) position.
  • A cystoscope, a thin tube with a camera and a light on the end, is inserted through the urethra and into the bladder. This allows the urologist to visualize the inside of the bladder.
  • Small surgical instruments are passed through the cystoscope, and the surgeon carefully removes or resects the bladder tumor. The tumor is then sent to a pathologist for examination.

Staging: If the tumor is found to be malignant, the pathologist can provide important information about its stage and grade. This information helps determine the extent of the cancer's spread within the bladder, which can guide further treatment decisions.

Recovery: Recovery after TURBT is generally quick. Most patients can go home the same day or the day after the procedure. Some temporary discomfort or mild urinary symptoms may be experienced after the procedure.

Risks and Complications: Common risks and complications associated with TURBT may include bleeding, infection, bladder perforation, or, in some cases, tumor recurrence.

TURBT is a valuable procedure for diagnosing and treating bladder tumors, particularly for early-stage bladder cancer. If cancer is confirmed, the findings from TURBT play a crucial role in determining the appropriate treatment plan, which may involve further surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, or a combination of these treatments. The choice of treatment depends on the specific type and stage of bladder cancer. 

Transurethral Resection of a Bladder Tumor (TURBT)