Prostate Cancer

Prostate Biopsy

The prostate is a walnut sized organ located just below the bladder that forms the junction between the male reproductive and urinary tracts and secretes fluid that makes up part of the semen.

Mr Thyer may recommend a biopsy of the prostate for one of the following reasons:

  1. The PSA test is elevated or elevating quickly
  2. The prostate feels abnormal
  3. Prostate MRI has shown an abnormality
  4. As part of surveillance for low risk prostate cancer
Pre operation

Ten days prior to the procedure you should notify Mr Thyer’s rooms if you are taking any blood thinning medication. Usually Mr Thyer will have requested an MRI of the prostate. Please ensure this has been performed at least 2 days prior to the procedure.

The procedure

On arrival at hospital you will be given antibiotics to help prevent infection. You will require an enema if your bowels have not moved prior to coming to hospital. You will require a short general anaesthetic. Mr Thyer will introduce an ultrasound probe into the rectum to image the prostate. Local anaesthetic will be introduced around the prostate. Needles will be inserted into the prostate via the skin between the scrotum and anus. Any abnormal areas on MRI or detected on examination will be targeted and the remainder of the prostate will be systematically sampled. Mr Thyer will send the samples to the pathologist for examination under a microscope (you may incur a pathologist fee). After the procedure the nurse will check you have passed urine then you will be sent home.

Note:

  1. For trans-rectal biopsy the needles will enter the prostate via the rectum. There is a higher risk of infection but the procedure is faster and can be performed under sedation only.
  2. Mr Thyer may also require flexible cystoscopy (look in the prostate and bladder via the penis) with a small telescope to check on your anatomy.
Risks
  • Bleeding. Most people get some blood in the urine which usually lasts for 1 week. Blood in the semen lasts for 2 months.
  • Infection. This occurs in less than 1% of biopsies. Call Mr Thyer if your temperature is over 38 Degrees after the biopsy.
  • Urinary retention. Occasionally you may not be able to pass urine after the procedure and a catheter in the bladder overnight would be required.
  • There are risks with any general anaesthetic which are very rare including blood clots, heart or lung problems and adverse drug reactions. The anaesthetist will discuss these with you at the time of the procedure.
Follow up

You will have an appointment made with Mr Thyer in his rooms to discuss the results of the biopsy. This will usually occur between 1 and 4 weeks following the procedure.

When to contact Mr Thyer

Following the procedure, you should contact Mr Thyer if you:

  • Have a fever over 38 Degrees
  • Are unable to pass urine
  • Have large clots in the urine
  • Have not received a follow up appointment
  • You can contact Mr Thyer via his rooms during working hours or after hours via the after hours nurse at Hollywood Hospital on (08) 9346 6000.

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