Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among American men. According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 233,000 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed and about 29,480 men will die from it in 2014. Screenings can help find prostate cancers early, which helps prepare men to understand their treatment options.

It has been difficult for physicians to image the prostate due to its complex vascularity and its location deep within the pelvic/abdominal cavity. Ultrasound alone does not provide enough detail to visualize the prostate, which leads to "blind sampling" and many deadly cancers being missed.

MRI+Ultrasound Fusion Imaging

We now offer Ultrasound+MRI Fusion Imaging for prostate biopsies, the newest breakthrough in prostate biopsy technology. This revolutionary technique combines 3.0 Tesla MRI with ultrasound to enhance the detection, visualization and evaluation of clinically significant prostate cancer, leading to a much more comfortable experience for the patient.

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Why get checked for prostate cancer?

  • 200,000 new cases of prostate cancer are diagnosed each year in the United States and approximately 32,000 men will die from the disease.
  • According to the American Cancer Society, there was a 12% mortality rate for prostate cancer patients in 2013.
  • A study by Cambridge University revealed that half of the men who were told they had a less serious form of the disease actually had serious and invasive types of prostate cancer.

Why is a new technology needed?

If your doctor suspects prostate cancer as a result of an abnormal digital rectal exam or a high prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood level, the next step may be to have a prostate biopsy.

Most common current biopsy methods involve a transrectal ultrasound (TRUS), which takes twelve random samples through all four quadrants of the prostate. These samples are considered to be “blind” biopsies, as ultrasound does not enable the physician to see the actual cancer. The inaccuracy of these biopsies can result in the missed detection of invasive cancer.

Zwanger-Pesiri Radiology is now offering a revolutionary alternative: 3D MRI + Ultrasound fusion targeted biopsy. This highly precise method, integrating MRI and Ultrasound technologies, improves early detection and helps diagnose and monitor prostate cancer with a new level of speed and precision.

Why is MRI important for a Prostate Biopsy?

MRI is the most accurate and sensitive imaging modality for the detection of prostate cancer and provides more detailed images than ultrasound, CT, or X-ray. The MRI scan must be performed on a 3T Skyra MRI machine because the 1.5T and weaker magnets will miss many cancers.

MRI does not expose you to any radiation and can be repeated without any adverse effects. For your comfort, we offer 3T Wide-bore MRI, which minimizes claustrophobia while maximizing image quality.

How does MRI+Ultrasound Fusion Imaging work?

3D MRI + Ultrasound fusion biopsies combine images from a pre-biopsy MRI scan and a real-time ultrasound. By overlaying the MR images with those from the realtime ultrasound, a high-definition 3D model of the prostate is created.

The physician uses the 3D model to accurately target and biopsy any suspicious areas of the prostate. Targeted biopsies identify 30% more high-risk cancers than standard “blind” biopsies. The increased accuracy of this procedure can also help to eliminate unnecessary repeat biopsies.

How do I prepare?

Request an appointment online or call us to book your appointment. Once your appointment is booked, your forms will be available on the patient portal.

Do not take Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Advil, Motrin or Aleve for one week prior to your appointment. If you take Coumadin, Plavix or any other blood thinners, you must get approval from your doctor to stop the medication one week prior to your biopsy. Also avoid fish oil and high doses of vitamins (except for prenatals). Patients may take their cardiac medications or blood pressure medications on the day of the exam with very little water.

Eat light meals on the day of your exam. Bring a snack for after the procedure.

Arrange for a driver to take you to and from the appointment. Someone must stay with you overnight at home after the procedure.

Bring with you to your appointment:

  • Prescription from your doctor.
  • Current insurance card.
  • Authorization number from your insurance carrier.
  • Any forms you completed at home.
  • Credit card or cash for your insurance co-pay.
  • Any imaging studies that you have from another facility. We like to compare the biopsy results with any previous studies to assist in the diagnostic process.
  • Picture identification.

What do I do when I arrive?

Present your prescription, insurance card and completed forms at the front desk. If any additional forms are required, they will be given to you at this time.

Be sure to inform the receptionist and technologist if you:

  • Have allergies.
  • Have any metal or a medical device in your body.
  • Have asthma.
  • Have had any recent surgery or trauma.
  • Are currently taking any medications.
  • Have any studies from another facility. We like to compare the new mammogram with any previous studies to assist in the diagnostic process.

Plan to arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.

What happens after the test?

The tissue sample is sent to a lab where it is analyzed by a board certified pathologist. The findings are then sent to us, as well as to your referring doctor. One of our board certified radiologists specializing in interventional radiology reviews the pathology report and dictates a final report which is transcribed, proofread and signed.

The final report is faxed and mailed to your referring doctor within three to five days. Your doctor will read the report and review the findings with you.

All of your signed reports and images are available to your referring doctor on our physician's web portal, and available to you on the patient web portal.