Prostate MRI. Know your options.

Posted , 17 users are following.

Hello. Just wanted to give a summary of my situation. I had a PSA of 1.9 in 2014. It had stayed in that range until around 2017. That is when I decided to have to have FLA done by Dr. K (with ok results, I am back on flomax doing pretty well). Fast forward to April of 2018: I went back to my URO and had a PSA of 3.5. Then in October of 2018 it went to 4.25. Due to the relatively quick increase, he suggested a prostate biopsy. I was never really concerned about the increasing PSA and cancer connection as I knew (and Dr. K confirmed) that any type of procedure can increase PSA levels). However, I felt like I needed to make sure. I eventually called his nurse to advise I was going to have a 3T MRI done before any type of invasive biopsy procedure. She told me that they can request the MRI for me and it would be covered by insurance. My first thought was why wasn't this the first suggestion by the doctor? I think we know the reason why.

The MRI came back negative and all is well.Please know your options and you should always consider the least invasive option first. Technology is a wonderful thing.

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  • Posted

    Wish I would have known this a year ago, my Uro did these two in reverse order. When I questioned her, she said insurance wont cover the MRI unless you do the biopsy first.

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    • Posted

      Tim

      Now you know the true. It can be done before. I went through the same thing many years ago. I was told at 47 I had prostate cancer. I don't remember if MRI were around 16 years ago but had a 12 needle biopsy which came back good.

      But I would have rather had the MRI instead.

      Take care Ken

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    • Posted

      to answer your question, MRI was in use in mid-80's already. I happen to work in that field and at that time 1.5T was starting to show up in US and Europe. I am not sure if they had developed protocols for prostate exams at that time, but head and body scans were done routinely. 3T came much later.

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    • Posted

      Good evening Nick

      Thank you for letting me know.

      I know I went through everything else leading up to the biopsy. I had every test and every probe they had back then.

      I don't think I will ever do a needle biopsy again. I think once was enough

      Thanks again and take care....Ken

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  • Posted

    Great story with a happy ending!

    Men are now getting smarter and becoming more informed due to forums like this. And that = taking control of our bodies and our destinies.

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  • Posted

    i agree....did the same with 3T MRI when my PSA went up, instead of invasive biopsy. Dr K was of great help!

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    • Posted

      Maybe I am missing a deeper point.

      If a PSA level rises, why shouldn't a biopsy precede an MRI -- assuming a biopsy, while uncomfortable, is not a danger to the male apparatus? (And anyway, isn't a biopsy a needed microscopic look at tissue...while MRI is more macroscopic? If PSA is a marker for prostate cancer, wouldn't a microscopic look at tissue be properly advised?)

      Disclosure: Age almost-73. PSA every year --- no matt3er what "they" say. My score is in the 2.4s. Has been for years. If I go to 4.4 in the span of a year or less, I would assume a biopsy is worth careful consideration, no?

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    • Posted

      Absolutely. Why assume otherwise? But I don 't believe a biopsy can be conducted during an MRI. Ultra-sound maybe, but not an MRI. (And we are at a time in history when -- depending on the direction of the news headlines -- we thrive on open skepticism of establishment institutions that save lives every day. One day it's the greedy drug companies -- until their product saves your life or the life of a loved one. Next day, maybe, the greedy universe of doctors who can take your heart from its cavity and give it a new life -- but should be "free of charge" because, some say, health care is a "right."

      My only right, as I see it, is to work hard and provide for my family. Paying health care premiums, life insurance premiums, etc. etc. etc. 'Cause in the end, we're all in this together. Health and life insurance premiums before new car payments and I-phones, I always say! 😉

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    • Posted

      I have had neither an MRI nor a biopsy, but am thinking about an MRI. My understanding is that the MRI can show areas in the prostate that are more likely cancerous or even have a high probability of being cancerous. Thereafter, the urologist can use the MRI scans to better target areas in the prostate for the biopsy.That's my understanding at least, but am looking forward to responses from men who've actually had both done.

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    • Posted

      Biopsies are not without risk. From a site called prostate dot net, I found this statement:

      "There are a few medically induced causes of prostatitis, prostate biopsy being one of them. A small percentage of men develop acute bacterial prostatitis after having a prostate biopsy. A prostate biopsy is one of the procedures a physician usually recommends when prostate cancer is suspected.

      Because the prostate biopsy procedure is done by passing a needle through the rectum to collect a specimen from the prostate, the needle can help transport bacteria from the bowel into the prostate, bladder, or even blood stream. The most common bacterium that causes acute bacterial prostatitis after a prostate biopsy is Escherichia coli (E. coli). Risk of infection goes up significantly if a cleansing enema is not performed prior to the procedure."

      Clearly, a biopsy should be done when it is indicated. However, let me give you an example of one being done, in my opinion, without good cause. A good friend of mine has BPH and went to a urologist. The urologist did an ultrasound (without a probe) and based on that alone ordered a biopsy. He hadn't even done a PSA test; he was just guessing that there could be cancer. As it turns out, my friend has median lobe growth, and will undergo FLA in a couple of months. In preparation for that, he had a 3T done close to where he lives, and it was sent to the specialist who will do the FLA procedure. It turned out the image was really clear for some reason. It turned out that the center doing the 3T MRI had not told my friend that the lower bowel and rectum needed to be empty through using a Fleet enema. So, any of you guys having a 3T MRI of the prostate, keep that in mind.

      Glenn

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    • Posted

      it is pretty simple. Biopsy takes samples from the prostate and if happen to miss the spot where the cancer is, then the result of biopsy would show "no cancer found"

      is misleading . MRI takes an image of the whole area , not samples. After MRI, if there is a sign of any abnormality, then targeted biopsy can be done. This is why MRI should be done before biopsy.

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    • Posted

      One day it's the greedy drug companies -- until their product saves your life or the life of a loved one<<

      Often the case is that the drug companies jumped on a patent that was made on a product developed by the taxpayers. Sure, we owe them some gratitude but can't they save lives without having to make tons of money off the situation. Pharmaceuticals is one of the most profitable business there is. In a way, these companies hijack something that should belong to the commons and then hold it for ransom. Look at what they're doing with insulin, a substance that has been around for decades for a much lower price.

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