Don't know exactly what "horrible" side effects of BCG you have heard about. Yes, there are side effects since kicking up the immune system is what you are looking for. Mine were primarily fatigue, and bladder irritation. Some cramps and bleeding and urgency for a few hours after administration. Nothing that I considered excessive and it did not interfere with my day-to-day activities. And I was over 70 when I had BCG (I also consider "elderly" to be MUCH older than I am!) Also, during the past several years I have had two male friends, one in his 70's and one in his 80's who have had BCG with no problems..
Of course there are patients who do not tolerate this just as with any medication. But they are the minority.
The side effects of BCG are nothing compared to what might be expected from systemic chemo should the cancer spread. Mitomycin is used when BCG is unavailable or when a patient cannot tolerate BCG but it is not as effective as BCG.
Diagnosis 2-08 Small papillary TCC; CIS
BCG; BCG maintenance
Vice-President, American Bladder Cancer Society
can someone tell me how painful/risky a BCG treatment for elderly people is? my father is 71 years old, 2nd time low grade bladder cancer diagnosis in 10 years..
Is Mitomycin C (40g) a better option for recurrent low grade tumors?? I heard horrible things about side effects BCG, but on the other hand it helped in many cases to reduce the recurrent tumor numbers..what should we do?? need help and advice please..