Background Bladder carcinoma is one of the common urological malignancies occurring worldwide in both sexes. Use of smokeless tobacco by women is common in rural areas of Pakistan. The clinico-pathological features of bladder carcinoma in women and association of smokeless tobacco as a possible risk factor for bladder carcinoma has not been well described in the literature. The objective of the study was to determine the clinico-pathological features of histologically confirmed bladder carcinoma in women and to investigate the role of smokeless tobacco use as a possible risk factor for its development. Patients and methods Of the 204 patients (160 male and 44 female M:F ratio 3.6:1) of newly diagnosed bladder carcinoma treated at Nishtar Medical College Hospital Multan from January 1998 to December 2004, the 44 female patients were evaluated with respect to age, clinical presentation, cystoscopic findings, histopathological reports and possible etiological factors. Data were collected and prospectively updated at the time of discharge from hospital and during follow-up in urology out-patient clinic. Results Transitional cell carcinoma accounted for all of the bladder carcinoma in women. Median age of the patients was 55 years and 68% patients were under 60 years of age. Majority of patients (88%) presented with hematuria. Eleven (25%) patients had superficial (pTa/pT1) while 33 (75%) patients had muscle invasive (T2–T4) bladder carcinoma. Most (81%) superficial tumors were papillary while muscle invasive tumors had solid configuration at cystoscopy. Of these, 21 (47%) patients had long history of smokeless tobacco use (chewable or moist snuff). Conclusion Transitional cell carcinoma is the most common bladder malignancy in women in Pakistan. Many women with bladder carcinoma had long history of use of smokeless tobacco. Majority of patients presented with hematuria and were under 60 years of age. At the time of diagnosis 75% women had muscle invasive bladder carcinoma. In women using smokeless tobacco, the correlation between stage of bladder carcinoma and duration of smokeless tobacco use was significant (p = 0.03). Further studies are needed to clarify the role of smokeless tobacco in the development of bladder carcinoma.