Abdominal Imaging

, Volume 29, Issue 1, pp 132–136 | Cite as

Transrectal ultrasound-guided biopsy of the prostate gland: value of 12 versus 6 cores

  • M. J. O’Connell
  • C. S. Smith
  • P. E. Fitzpatrick
  • C. O. Keane
  • J. M. Fitzpatrick
  • M. Behan
  • H. F. Fenlon
  • J. G. Murray


We investigated the effect on prostate carcinoma detection of 12 versus 6 core biopsies at transrectal ultrasound (TRUS), when all biopsies are taken from the lateral peripheral zone. This was a prospective study of 202 consecutive men, ages 51 to 81 years, referred for TRUS-guided biopsy of the prostate gland. All patients had prostate serum antigen levels higher than 4.0 ng/mL and/or abnormal digital rectal examination. In each case three biopsies were taken from the peripheral zones of the right and left lobes of the prostate. Biopsies were taken at the apex, midway between the apex and the base, and at the base. A second set of biopsies was taken from the same regions and analyzed separately. In total, twelve biopsies were taken. Note was subsequently made of additional carcinoma diagnosis increase in Gleason grade, and new diagnoses of carcinoma in the opposite side of the gland diagnosed on the second set of biopsies alone. Seventy-eight of the 202 men (38.6%) had prostatic carcinoma diagnosed on TRUS-guided biopsy. Of these 78 patients, six were diagnosed with malignancy based on the second set of biopsies alone, a 2.9% increase in the 202 patients, representing an increased yield of 8.3% (95% confidence interval, 5.3–28.6%). In nine cases (12.5%; 95% confidence interval, 6.2–22.9%), the Gleason tumor grade was increased on the second set of sextant biopsies; in an additional nine cases, carcinoma was detected in the opposite side of the gland. There were two complications (1%). A 12- versus six-core biopsy strategy for TRUS-guided biopsy of the prostate gland improves detection and histologic grading of prostate carcinoma. The added benefit of additional biopsies was lower in this series than in some prior studies using extensive biopsy protocols.


Prostate Transrectal Ultrasound Biopsy 



The authors acknowledge grant assistance from the Faculty of Radiologists, of the Royal College of Surgeons, in Ireland.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York, Inc. 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. J. O’Connell
    • 1
  • C. S. Smith
    • 1
  • P. E. Fitzpatrick
    • 2
  • C. O. Keane
    • 3
  • J. M. Fitzpatrick
    • 4
  • M. Behan
    • 1
  • H. F. Fenlon
    • 1
  • J. G. Murray
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyMater Misericordiae Hospital, Eccles Street, Dublin 7Ireland
  2. 2.Department of Public Health Medicine and EpidemiologyUniversity College Dublin, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2Ireland
  3. 3.Department of PathologyMater Misericordiae Hospital, Eccles Street, Dublin 7Ireland
  4. 4.Department of SurgeryMater Misericordiae Hospital, Eccles Street, Dublin 7Ireland

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