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This section is about how non-invasive bladder cancer is staged and graded. We also have information about how invasive bladder cancer is staged|.
The stage of a cancer describes its size and whether it has spread. Although test results provide a lot of information, the exact stage of the cancer won’t be known until after surgery to remove it.
Once your doctors know the stage of the bladder cancer, they can decide on the most appropriate treatment for you.
The most commonly used staging system is the TNM system:
Non-invasive bladder cancer has not spread to the lymph nodes or to other parts of the body.
Non-invasive bladder cancer will be staged as CIS, Ta or T1:
The stages of non-invasive bladder cancer
The grade of a cancer gives an idea of how quickly it might grow. Bladder cancer is graded according to how the cancer cells| look when the biopsy sample is examined under a microscope. Knowing the grade of a cancer helps your urologist decide if you need treatment after surgery|.
Carcinoma in situ (CIS) is always classed as high-grade.
Content last reviewed: 1 February 2013
Next planned review: 2015
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© Macmillan Cancer Support 2013
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