Prostate Biopsy – Types, Side Effects

The prostate biopsy is taking tissue samples from the prostate gland and examining it under the microscope for cell differentiation. Cancerous cells are shaped and arranged differently than healthy cells. The more differentiated the cancerous cells are from the healthy cells the more aggressive the cancer .If no cancerous cells are reveal through the biopsy, it means either the patient does not have cancer or the biopsy missed the tumor. 75% of men report negative primary biopsy report.

Before the Prostate biopsy:

Before undergoing biopsy the patient has to take antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection after prostate biopsy. He should also stop taking anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin or ibuprofen that may increase the risk of bleeding after biopsy. Finally the doctor may also order an enema before biopsy to remove feces and gas from the rectum that may complicate the process of transrectal biopsy.

Types of Prostate biopsies:

There are three types of prostate biopsies – transrectal, transurethral and transperineal. The transrectal biopsy is guided by transrectal ultrasound through the anus into rectum. The transurethral biopsy is performed with a lighted cytoscope up through the urethra so that the doctor can look directly at the prostate gland. The transperineal biopsy collects the tissue through a small incision in the perineum.

Transrectal Prostate Biopsy

In this biopsy the patient may experience a small amount of bleeding from the rectum after the biopsy. The process uses spring loaded needles to collect the sample tissues.

Transperineal Prostate Biopsy:

Patients opting to undergo the transperineal biopsy may be put under general anesthesia if they wish to be unconscious during biopsy. The patient may experience some tenderness and blood in the semen for one or two months after biopsy.

Transurethral Prostate Biopsy:

In this kind of biopsy the cytoscope is inserted into the urethra. Local anesthesia is given to numb the area. Doctors look directly at the prostate through the cytoscope and insert a cutting loop to extract tissue.

Side effects of Prostate Biopsy:

Though minimal pain is associated with prostate biopsy, men may experience blood in their urine and semen after the test.  Soreness and groggy feeling may also be experienced, for which the patient may need an attendant to be driven home. Repeated test has to be conducted if the tumor is small.