Prostate Biopsy Pros And Cons

Submitted by Medical Health Test Team on October 16, 2012

A biopsy procedure is used to collect tissue samples from various sites in the body. A biopsy is usually ordered to check if an abnormal growth is cancerous or not. This abnormal growth is known as a tumor. For most organs, tumors are visible on imaging scans such as CT scans and MRI scans. This is because the typically affected organs are usually large and not obstructed by other organs around them. A prostate biopsy is the procedure performed on the prostate gland. This gland is very small, typically the size of a walnut. This makes a biopsy procedure on the gland a little more difficult. It also means that cancer cells within the gland may not show up on an imaging scan

For this reason, a prostate biopsy requires other methods of confirmation before it is conducted. A digital rectal test is a test where the doctor uses the rectum to access the prostate. This is an examination conducted with a gloved finger. The finger will press the organ and feel its texture. A prostate which contains tumor cells is likely to be harder than a prostate that is normal. Another test used to examine patients is the PSA test. The level of this antigen tends to be elevated when a person is suffering from prostate cancer. The elevation is not a 100% accurate diagnosis for cancer, but it is quite effective at identifying cancer

There are many prostate biopsy pros and cons. Among the pros, one can say that such a scan is useful in detecting cancer and must therefore be tried in order to avoid a cancer going undetected. Another pro in the favor of a prostate biopsy is the short duration and recovery period associated with it. This means that a patient can resume his normal activities after a biopsy. Among the cons associated with a prostate biopsy, the main problem one can identify is the risk of injury or bleeding from the gland. Many cases report infection or injury after the procedure which necessitates further treatment. The prostate biopsy procedure collects many samples in order to reduce the chances of missing a tumor. However, this does not rule out the possibility that the test will miss the cancer. Because of the small and scattered nature of prostate cancer tumors, it can be said that the test is not completely accurate at confirming or ruling out prostate cancer

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