MRI Fusion Biopsy
With an accuracy rate of 95%, our recently introduced MRI Fusion Biopsy procedure, offers an exceptionally accurate diagnosis of prostate cancer.
We pride ourselves on being early adopters of new medical technologies and we’re one of the few hospitals in Essex and the UK to offer you this specialist procedure carried out by Mr Henry Lewi, consultant, – one of a handful of surgeons in the UK qualified to undertake this procedure.
What is MRI Fusion Biopsy ? It’s a more accurate way of detecting the presence of small and early prostate cancers using a fusion of MRI and ultrasound and previously identified on an MRI scan alone. So you have the best chance of getting an accurate, early diagnosis.
Procedure Of The Biopsy
A template guided biopsy is carried out under a general anaesthetic using an ultrasound probe which is gently inserted into the back passage and the prostate is scanned. A soft, flexible tube is inserted through the penis into the bladder to identify the urethra and is left in place for the duration of the procedure. Using a grid (template) with holes every 5mm placed against the perineum (the skin between the scrotum and back passage).
The MRI scan is downloaded onto an ultrasound image so accurate biopsies can be obtained. Typically 12-15 biopsies are taken. The procedure normally lasts about 20 minutes.
Typically between 40-60 biopsy samples are taken and the whole procedure lasts between 20-40 minutes. If you have a larger prostate, then many more biopsies can be taken.
Before The Fusion Biopsy
Four days before the procedure, you should start taking a tablet called an alpha-blocker (Tamsulosin). Your hospital doctor should have given you a 2 week prescription for this. If not, please call the hospital and ask whether you should be on it. This tablet relaxes the prostate and reduces the chance of the template biopsies causing retention of urine (not being able to pass urine). You will also be given a course of antibiotics to start one day prior to the procedure and will continue for 7 days after the procedure.
You will need to be admitted to hospital a few hours before the procedure. You should not eat anything for 6 hours before your procedure time to ensure your safety under anaesthetic. You can drink water up until 4 hours before your procedure time. A member of the team will see you and you will be asked to sign a consent form to state you agree to have the procedure if you have not already done so. The anaesthetist will see you prior to the procedure to discuss the anaesthesia with you.
After The Procedure
- You will be given antibiotic tablets and painkillers to take for seven days after the procedure. You should continue with the alpha-blockers for another 10 days. You may experience some perineal pain or discomfort after the procedure: paracetamol or other simple painkillers should be adequate. You should avoid any medication containing aspirin for 24 hours as it causes blood thinning and will therefore increase the risk of bleeding.
- You can expect to see some blood in your urine for 1 – 2 days following the biopsies. You may notice some blood in your semen for up to 3 months. If the bleeding becomes excessive, prolonged or if you start to pass blood clots then you should seek medical attention.
- Occasionally swelling may occur in the prostate gland as an inflammatory response to the biopsies being taken. This can cause difficulty in passing urine and may very occasionally cause the ability to pass urine to stop completely. This is known as urinary retention and you would then need a catheter inserted to drain your bladder for a few days. You will not be allowed to go home until you have passed urine.
- There is a <0.5% risk of developing sepsis (a very bad infection) following prostate biopsy. The antibiotics you will be given should help prevent this. If you develop flu-like symptoms within 24 hours of the biopsies being taken (fever, cold shivers, general aching) you should seek medical assistance immediately. You should drink plenty of fluids.
- You can usually return to work the day after you have been discharged from hospital, if you feel ready to do so. It may be difficult sitting down for prolonged periods of time for the first 2-3 days.
- You need to check with your car insurance company about your cover following anaesthetic. You also need to feel comfortable doing an emergency stop. If you are taking any medication, check with the pharmacist whether it is safe to drive while taking them.