Advancing Medicine: Breakthroughs in Urology

State-of-the-Art Equipment for Prostate Cancer Diagnosis

In prostate cancer care, the ability to make decisions about care is enhanced with state-of-the-art equipment. The latest addition to Hartford Hospital’s Tallwood Urology & Kidney Institute is MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) US (ultrasound – high frequency sound waves) fusion equipment which gives a more accurate biopsy of areas of the prostate suspicious for prostate cancer and identifies disease progression.

Examples of the 3-D images that the magnetic resonance imagine ultrasound fusion equipment provides for prostate biopsies.

According to the National Institutes of Health, there are approximately one million prostate biopsies done in the U.S. every year, with 240,000 men being told they have prostate cancer. Because current traditional techniques of biopsy don’t involve full "sight," meaning there is some uncertainty as to exactly what tissue is being extracted, 23% of men with a negative biopsy actually have cancer.

MRI-US fusion allows a precise diagnosis as it fuses ultrasound with MRI to create a 3-D image allowing the physician to see the entire biopsy area. What does this mean for patients? It means that the treatment plan can be created with a greater confidence. Those patients who are on active surveillance, where cancer has been identified but the cancer does not require treatment, can be monitored with greater accuracy.