Must-Know Facts about the Prostate, Cancer, & Prostate Ultrasound Biopsies

A doctor talks to an older man about his upcoming prostate biopsy procedure.As the second-most-common cancer in men in the United States and with statistics showing that one in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime, there is a solid chance that you or someone you love may be affected by this disease. Your doctor may recommend you visit a urologist for a prostate biopsy procedure to diagnose the condition if certain symptoms are evident.

What are the symptoms of prostate cancer, what is a prostate biopsy procedure, and what will it discover? This comprehensive overview can help you approach the procedure with confidence and peace of mind.

Must-Know Facts about the Prostate, Prostate Cancer, & Prostate Ultrasound Biopsies

What Is the Prostate?

The prostate gland is a small, walnut-sized organ in the male reproductive system. It is situated below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The prostate produces fluid for semen and utilizes its muscles to propel the semen into the urethra, where it is subsequently ejaculated.

What Are the Symptoms of Prostate Problems?

  • Experiencing difficulty initiating urination, including a weak or interrupted flow
  • Frequent urination, particularly during the night
  • Difficulty in fully emptying the bladder
  • Experiencing discomfort or a sensation of heat while urinating
  • Finding blood in the urine or semen
  • Persistent pain in the back, hips, or pelvis
  • Experiencing discomfort during ejaculation

It is important to consider that these symptoms may be caused by conditions other than prostate cancer, but you should visit your doctor as soon as possible if you are experiencing any of them.

When Do I Need a Biopsy?

Your doctor may recommend a prostate biopsy if you have an abnormal PSA (prostate-specific antigen) level, an abnormal digital rectal exam (DRE) result, or other symptoms that could indicate the presence of prostate cancer. Your doctor may also recommend a biopsy if you have had prior treatment for prostate cancer and need to monitor the progress of the disease. Some doctors may also order a biopsy as part of a routine checkup for men over the age of 50.

What Happens During a Prostate Biopsy?

A prostate biopsy is a procedure used to collect tissue samples from the prostate gland. The tissue samples are examined under a microscope for signs of cancer or other abnormalities, such as inflammation or infection.

What Is a MR US Fusion Prostate Biopsy?

An MR US Fusion Prostate Biopsy (or MRI US Fusion Prostate Biopsy) is a procedure that combines magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with ultrasound. This technique uses MRI to generate an image of the prostate and then combines it with ultrasound imaging to create a three-dimensional view. The doctor can then use this image to identify suspicious areas on the prostate. Then, using ultrasound guidance, a thin biopsy needle is inserted through the wall of the rectum and into the prostate gland into the areas of concern, and prostate tissue samples are collected.

How Long Does It Take?

A prostate biopsy is a procedure that can be done with either general or local anesthesia on an outpatient basis and usually takes about 30 minutes.

Is There Recovery Time from a Biopsy?

Prostate biopsy recovery time can vary. After the procedure, most patients will feel some pain or discomfort, and keeping to light activity will be recommended for the first 24-48 hours. You may also have minor bleeding, but it should stop in a few days. Your doctor may recommend taking pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. And, as there is a risk of infection, antibiotics may be prescribed. Follow your doctor’s instructions for post-biopsy care.

When Do I Get Biopsy Results?

Biopsy results can take up to a week or more to be available. A pathologist will review the prostate tissue samples under a microscope to look for any abnormalities, such as cancerous or precancerous cells.

What Do My Biopsy Results Mean?

If you receive a negative report, you don’t have cancer.

If you receive a positive report, that means the pathologist found cancer cells. The cancer will be evaluated using a scale known as the Gleason score. The Gleason scoring system is a combination of two numbers, ranging from 2 (indicating non aggressive cancer) to 10 (indicating very aggressive cancer), with less frequent use of the lower end of the range. The range of Gleason scores used to assess prostate biopsy samples is typically from 6 to 10. A score of 6 indicates a diagnosis of low-grade prostate cancer. A score of 7 indicates moderate-grade prostate cancer. Scores ranging from 8 to 10 indicate high-grade cancers.

Your doctor will discuss the results with you and recommend a course of treatment. In some cases, further testing may be necessary after a biopsy to determine the stage and grade of the tumor.

Concerned About Urinary or Prostate Troubles? Talk to an NCSH Urologist

Our team of top urological doctors are experts in men’s urinary systems and reproductive structures. If you need an MRI US fusion prostate biopsy, you can trust you’ll receive the patient-focused care you deserve so you can get back to better health and live your life to its fullest. To schedule an appointment with an NCSH-appointed urologist at our state-of-the-art facility conveniently located near Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill, visit the physician page, select a physician’s photo, and follow the easy instructions.

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