Objective: To investigate whether the intravesical Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) administered to non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) patients has a protective effect against Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19).
Methods: Six hundred and ninety-nine patients with NMIBC were enrolled in the study. The patients were divided into 2x2 groups based on the conditions of having received BCG treatment and having had a COVID-19 infection. The normality of the distribution was analyzed using the Shapiro-Wilk test. Statistical relationships between the groups were analyzed using the chi-square test. P<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: There were 34 individuals who had a history of COVID-19 infection and 665 who did not, and 273 individuals who received BCG treatment and 426 who did not. A history of COVID-19 infection was encountered in 18 (6.6%) of the 273 patients who received BCG treatment and in 16 (3.8%) of the 426 patients who did not receive BCG treatment. The 2x2 statistical association between the groups was analyzed using the chi-square test and a statistically significant relationship was not determined (p=0.065).
Conclusion: As we initiated the study, we expected lower rates of COVID-19 infection in patients who received intravesical BCG; however, the results of this study showed us that this was not the case. The disease was encountered at higher rates in those who received intravesical BCG in contrast with our expectations; however, this difference was not statistically significant.