Trans-Rectal Ultrasound (TRUS) Guided Prostate Biopsy
Just below your bladder and in front of your rectum is a small, muscular gland called the prostate. It wraps around the urethra, the tube that carries urine from your bladder. Your prostate produces most of your semen.
If a biopsy is needed
If cells in the prostate change abnormally, cancer may form. Cancer often appears in the outer area of the prostate (near the rectum) before spreading to the inner areas of the gland. Usually, there are no symptoms unless the growth begins to press on the urethra, which will cause you some pain.
If your doctor finds suspicious areas in your prostate or if your PSA blood test is abnormal, a biopsy may be recommended. To do the biopsy, your doctor takes tissue samples from the suspicious areas of your prostate for examination. A biopsy is often performed during the ultrasound test.
Why you need a prostate ultrasound biopsy
If a potential prostate problem is identified through a digital rectal exam or a PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) blood test, your doctor may suggest that you have a prostate ultrasound and biopsy. This imaging technique, along with a biopsy, helps your physician discover cancer early, when it is more likely to be treatable. Prostate ultrasound biopsies may be done in our office but they are also performed in our Surgery Center under general anesthesia. Prostate biopsies may be uncomfortable so having it done on an outpatient basis in a surgery center can alleviate the pain since you are put to sleep.
What ultrasound reveals
Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create an image of the prostate gland. This can help your doctor identify abnormalities in the gland.
Taking the prostate biopsy sample
- Under ultrasound guidance, the small tip of the biopsy needle is inserted through your rectum into your prostate.
- Multiple tissue samples are taken from the prostate (this is only slightly uncomfortable). Your tissue samples are then sent to a lab for pathology analysis.
After your biopsy
When the results of your biopsy are ready, your doctor will discuss the results with you, as well as any further atudies or treatment that may be needed.
- You may notice some rectal bleeding or blood in your urine for a few days.
- You may see blood in your semen for 2-3 weeks.
- Ask your doctor if you should temporarily limit exercise or sexual intercourse after your biopsy.
- Call your doctor if you have a fever, excessive urinary or rectal bleeding, muscle aches, fatigue, or difficulty urinating.
Preventing future problems
Ultrasound alone is not a complete prostate exam; it is used to check abnormalities found by other tests. Even if your ultrasound shows no problems, continue to have regular prostate exams. The American Cancer Society recommends yearly digital rectal exams for men over age 40 and yearly PSA blood tests for men over age 50. If you are African American or have a family history of prostate cancer, you are at a higher risk, so, please call our office to schedule annual prostate check-ups.
West Coast Urology
Lawrence R. Paletz, MD
Ernest H. Agatstein, MD FACS
Shahrad Aynehchi, MD FACS
Sepehr Nowfar, MD, MPH
Inglewood (310) 673-3333 Downey (562) 923-0706