Urological management (medical and surgical) of BK-virus associated haemorrhagic cystitis in children following haematopoietic stem cell transplantation

Nikhil Vasdev, Angela Davidson, Christian Harkensee, Mary Slatter, Andrew Gennery, Ian Willetts, Andrew Thorpe


Aim: Haemorrhagic cystitis (HC) is uncommon and in its severe form potentially life threatening complication of Haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in children. We present our single centre experience in the urological management of this clinically challenging condition.

Patients and Methods: Fourteen patients were diagnosed with BK-Virus HC in our centre. The mean age at diagnosis was 8.8 years (range, 3.2-18.4 years). The mean number of days post-BMT until onset of HC was 20.8 (range, 1 – 51). While all patients tested urine positive for BKV at the clinical onset of HC, only four patients had viral quantification, with viral loads ranging from 97,000 to >1 billion/ml. 8 patients had clinical HC. Ten patients experienced acute GVHD (grade I: 6 patients, grade II: 3 patients, grade 4: 1 patient).

Results: Four patients received medical management for their HC. Treatments included hyperhydration, MESNA, blood and platelet transfusion, premarin and oxybutynin (Table 6).  Two patients received both medical and surgical management which included cystoscopy with clot evacuation, bladder irrigation and supra-pubic catheter insertion. One patient received exclusive surgical management. Seven patients were treated conservatively.

Conclusion: There is limited available evidence for other potential therapeutic strategies highlighting the need for more research into the pathophysiology of HSCT-associated HC. Commonly used interventions with possible clinical benefit (e.g. cidofovir, ciprofloxacin) still require to be evaluated in multi-centre, high-quality studies. Potential future preventative and therapeutic options, such as modulation of conditioning, immunosuppression and engraftment, new antiviral and anti-inflammatory and less nephrotoxic agents need to be assessed.


Cite this article as:
Vasdev N, Davidson A, Harkensee C, Slatter M, Gennery A, Willetts I, Thorpe A.Urological management (medical and surgical) of BK-virus associated haemorrhagic cystitis in children following haematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Int J Cancer Ther Oncol 2013;1(1):01013.



Haemorrhagic Cystitis, Haemopoitic Stem Cell Transplant, Urological Management, Patient Outcome

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14319/ijcto.0101.3

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