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Transrectal ultrasound guided biopsy for detecting prostate cancer: can random biopsies be reduced using the 4-dimensional technique?

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We present our experience with a new technique of real time 3-dimensional sonography—“4-dimensional Transrectal ultrasound (TRUS)” guided prostate biopsy. A total of 64 patients suspected of having prostate cancer based on an elevated prostate-specific antigen (greater than 4 ng/ml) formed the study group. A voluson (General Electric Vivid 3) ultrasound machine equipped with a transrectal 5–8 MHz curvilinear transducer was used. Sonography-guided prostate biopsy was performed following prostate imaging and volume calculation using 3D and 4D imaging. Biopsies of tumor suspicious areas, if present, as well as random biopsies were done. Histopathology showed prostate cancer in 15 (23.4%) and benign prostatic conditions in 49 (76.6%). TRUS examination in the 15 detected prostatic cancers showed that 6(40%) were hypoechoic, 4 (26.7%) were of mixed hypo and hyper echogenicity, 1 (6.7%) was hyperechoic, and 4 (26.7%) were isoechoic. TRUS finding of a hypoechoic lesion was significantly associated with malignancy. Other TRUS findings such as texture, calcification, and cysts did not show any association with malignancy. Mortality was zero after ultrasound-guided prostate biopsy. TRUS is the diagnostic test of choice in detection of prostate cancer. With advances in the technique of TRUS, effort is being made to identify more subtle lesions in order to reduce random biopsies. 4-Dimensional TRUS does improve the diagnostic accuracy but there is still a group of patients with “invisible” cancers. Therefore, the policy of random biopsies has to be continued till this incidence can be eliminated.

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Correspondence to Fawzi T. Abul.

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Abul, F., Arun, N., Abu-Assi, M. et al. Transrectal ultrasound guided biopsy for detecting prostate cancer: can random biopsies be reduced using the 4-dimensional technique?. Int Urol Nephrol 39, 517–524 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11255-006-9060-2

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  • Prostate cancer
  • Prostatic specific antigen
  • Transrectal ultrasound
  • Prostate guided biopsy