Urethral cancer surgery

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Urethral cancer Microchapters


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Historical Perspective




Differentiating Urethral cancer from other Diseases

Epidemiology and Demographics

Risk Factors

Natural History, Complications and Prognosis



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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]


Surgery is the mainstay of treatment for urethral cancer. However, it is not recommended among patients with metastatic urethral cancer.


  • Surgery is the mainstay of therapy for urethral cancers in both women and men. The surgical approach depends on tumor stage and anatomic location, and tumor grade plays a less important role in treatment decisions. Although the traditional recommendation has been to achieve a 2-cm tumor-free margin, the optimal surgical margin has not been rigorously studied and is not well defined.[1]
  • The role of lymph node dissection is not clear in the absence of clinical involvement, and the role of prophylactic dissection is controversial.
  • Ablative techniques, such as transurethral resection, electroresection and fulguration, or laser vaporization-coagulation, are used to preserve organ function in cases of superficial anterior tumors, although the supporting literature is scant.
  • Surgery is the most common treatment for cancer of the urethra. One of the following types of surgery may be done:
  • Open excision surgery
  • Electro-resection with flash surgery
  • Laser surgery
  • Cystourethrectomy surgery
  • Cystoprostatectomy surgery
  • Anterior body cavity surgery
  • Incomplete penectomy surgery
  • Basic penectomy surgery
  • Surgery is not recommended among patients with metastatic urethral cancer.


  1. National Cancer Institute. Physician Data Query Database 2015. http://www.cancer.gov/publications/pdq