Approximately 161,000 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed this year in the United States and over 26,000 men will die from the disease. If diagnosed early, prostate cancer can be easily cured through robotic surgery, radioactive seed implantation or external beam radiation therapy. All of these treatments are performed on a regular basis at Milford Regional Medical Center. One of the most challenging aspects of prostate cancer, however, is detecting the disease in its earliest stages before it has spread outside of the prostate.
Men at risk for prostate cancer should have a simple blood test known as Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) to see if there may be a prostate problem. Although the PSA is helpful in detecting prostate cancer, it may be elevated for other reasons such as benign enlargement, inflammation or infection of the prostate.
Men who have an elevated PSA should be referred by their primary care provider to a urologist who may do additional tests including an ultrasound-guided prostate biopsy in their office. Once considered standard of care, this procedure may easily miss a tumor which is not readily visible on the ultrasound images.
Fortunately, Milford Regional Medical Center now offers 2 new state-of-the-art technologies for detecting those prostate cancers which may have been previously missed using standard ultrasound-guided biopsies.
Multiparametric MRI is an advanced imaging technology which may detect otherwise invisible cancers within the prostate. Using magnetic waves, this painless radiological exam may now detect an abnormal area in the prostate, previously invisible on the ultrasound images, in order to provide a more accurate target for a biopsy,
MRI/Ultrasound(US) Fusion Biopsy of the prostate is a procedure which utilizes the high definition images generated during the MRI test. With the patient under sedation, the urologist will “fuse” the MRI pictures with a real-time ultrasound scan using a special device called the Artemis (Eigen, Grass Valley, CA), enabling the physician to perform more accurate biopsies during this outpatient procedure. Three-dimensional images produced by the Artemis allow the urologist to view the prostate in multiple planes, tracking each biopsy path in real-time, to ensure that the abnormality seen on MRI is precisely sampled. Biopsy images can then be permanently downloaded to the patient’s electronic medical record and are invaluable in planning future surgery, radioactive seed placement or external beam radiation to cure the cancer.
Multiparametric MRI and MRI/US Fusion Biopsy of the prostate are both important new technologies in ensuring the very best cancer care for our patients at Milford Regional Medical Center.
For more information on MRI/US Fusion Biopsy of the prostate using the Artemis, please contact Dr. Jeffrey Steinberg at Urology Specialists of Milford, LLC at 508-473-6333.