Stages of Bladder Cancer

There are five stages of bladder cancer. Which stage you have is based on the location and size of the tumor and how far it may have spread.

  • Stage 0 (noninvasive): cancer cells are found only on the surface of the inner lining of the bladder; this stage is also known as in situ
  • Stage I (superficial, non-muscle-invasive): cancer is confined to the inner lining of the bladder, with no evidence that it has spread to another part of the pelvis or other organs
  • Stage II (muscle-invasive): cancer has spread into the muscle wall of the bladder
  • Stage III (muscle-invasive): cancer has spread into the muscle wall of the bladder, the fatty layer surrounding the bladder, and the reproductive organs, such as the prostate, uterus, or vagina
  • Stage IV (metastatic): cancer has spread beyond the bladder to the wall of the abdomen or pelvis and possibly to lymph nodes or other parts of the body

Our doctors can tell you which stage of bladder cancer you have after they’ve done a biopsy and completed any imaging studies that are needed. This staging process allows your care team to design a customized treatment plan for you.