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Bladder wall thickening (differential)

Last revised by Dr David Carroll on 31 Jul 2022

Differential diagnosis for bladder wall thickening depends on whether the bladder is adequately distended. The bladder wall may be thickened if:

  • >3 mm when distended
  • >5 mm when nondistended

If the bladder is not distended, then it is difficult to exclude artifactual thickening from a collapsed bladder

If the bladder wall is adequately distended, then a differential may be developed based on whether the bladder is diffusely thickened or focally thickened:

Diffuse bladder wall thickening
Focal bladder wall thickening

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: local invasion of sigmoid colon cancer
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  • Case 2: cystitis
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