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Atypical urothelial cells
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Atypical urothelial cells

My father passed away at the age of 69 having had bladder cancer for 15 years.  Appproximately 10 years ago, at the age of 43, I was diagnosed with interstitial cystitis.  I have been symptom free for the past few years other than trace amounts of blood in my urine.  My family physician does urinalysis every year during my yearly physical and cytology to check for cancer.  This year the urinalysis came back showing small amounts of blood, leukocyte esterase-trace, and RBC 3-5; the cytology specimen came back showing atypical urothelial cells present.  My question to the forum is does the presence of these cells have any correlation to the cystitis or are they a precursor to bladder cancer?
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Before attributing the result to cystitis, it would be wise to ensure that it isn't due to cancer.  

I would recommend a cystoscopy for a more thorough examination.  Further tests to be consider would be an intravenous pyelogram.  There may be some role for urinary biomarkers, but they do not take the place of cystoscopy - you may want to inquire about these tests with your urologist.  

If everything is negative, then it may be possible that it is related to cystitis.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
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