Mapping the way forward for prostate cancer diagnosis

13 June 2018

Accurate cancer diagnosis is key to getting a patient on the right track for treatment.

Whilst there are several methods for diagnosing prostate cancer, template prostate mapping biopsy is considered by many urologists as one of the best way to successfully diagnose prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men and one in eight will get prostate cancer in their lifetime.

With this knowledge, having an accurate diagnosis enables urologists to plan the best course of treatment and help save lives.

Consultant Urologist Mr Alan Doherty who does template prostate mapping biopsies at Spire Parkway Private Hospital, Solihull, answers some questions about the biopsy.

Q: What does a template prostate mapping biopsy involve?

A: This procedure is a day case procedure performed under general anaesthetic. Samples are taken with a needle that approaches the prostate through the skin below the scrotum. It takes about 15 minutes.

Q: Is it more accurate than other methods for identifying prostate cancer?

A: This approach allows all parts of the prostate to be sampled, unlike the transrectal route. Along with fusion of MRI images, we can enhance the accuracy even further.

A: What are the benefits of having a prostate mapping biopsy?

It is more accurate, the needle travels in a direction which allows all parts of the prostate to be sampled, whereas the transrectal route can struggle to reach the front part of the prostate. It is less painful and has a much lower risk of infection, unlike the transrectal route which approaches the prostate through the rectum where there are faeces.

Q: Are there any side effects?

A: After the procedure some patients struggle to pass urine for the first few hours and some find there is a stinging feeling during urination. Bruising below the scrotum and passing blood in the urine and semen can continue for a few weeks.

Q: What happens after the procedure?

A: Patients can return home the same day with histology results usually take two weeks to come back.

Q: How quickly could I have a consultation, and how much would it cost? 

A: It depends on the availability of the consultant you wanted to see, but we pride ourselves on getting you fast access to diagnosis and you can often get a consultation within 24/48 hours. Initial consultation fees vary by consultant, but between £175-£250 is a reasonable guide.

Q: If I need surgery, how quickly could I have it?

A: We have no waiting lists at Spire Parkway, but again it depends on the availability of the consultant you wanted, but as a guide, and subject to your pre-operation assessment, between one and two weeks. 

Q: I don’t have health insurance, can I self-pay? 

A: Yes, you can. Our self-pay team can talk you through this and explain the finance options that are available, should you wish to explore them. Call 0121 704 5530, or click here to submit an enquiry online.

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