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Stephenson Cancer Center Physicians Introduce New Prostate Cancer Diagnosis Tool Leading to Better Patient Outcomes

Tuesday, June 23, 2015 - Campus News -

Oklahoma men now have access to a powerful new solution for more targeted prostate biopsies at the Stephenson Cancer Center at the University of Oklahoma.  

This new technology fuses pre-biopsy magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) images of the prostate with ultrasound-guided biopsy images in real time. The enhanced cancer detection offered through this tool is leading to better patient outcomes through a more accurate biopsy. 

“Targeted MRI/ultrasound biopsy is becoming the new standard in prostate care, and the Prostate and Urologic Cancers Clinic at the Stephenson Cancer Center is pleased to be the first in the area to offer this powerful solution to our patients,” said Dr. Michael S. Cookson, professor and chair of the department of Urology at the OU College of Medicine. 

The new technology has been shown to increase cancer detection by about 20 percent over traditional biopsy. Traditional prostate biopsies are done “blind” with physicians randomly sampling the prostate- an approach that has been used since the 1980s. 

With MRI-guided prostate biopsies, a MRI identifies suspicious lesions before the biopsy, and then the 3-D map is fused or overlapped with the real-time 3-D ultrasound images during the patient biopsy procedure to create a very precise image of the area. 

The new system uses electromagnetic tracking, similar to the GPS in a car, to track the location and positioning of the biopsy device as it allows the physician to more accurately guide the biopsy needle into the targeted lesion. 

For patients, the only additional step to the prostate examination is the addition of MRI imaging, which occurs in a separate visit before the biopsy exam. Cookson said the MRI-guided prostate biopsy leads to earlier diagnosis when cancer is present and reduces the number of false positives. Other benefits include reduced recovery time, lower risk of infection, and less bleeding and pain.  

“We are confident that this new tool will provide Oklahomans with access to the latest technology to identify and target suspicious prostate lesions,” said Dr. Kelly Stratton, a urologic oncologist at the Stephenson Cancer Center and assistant professor in the OU College of Medicine. 

According to the American Cancer Society, up to one in six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime. This makes prostate cancer the most common form of cancer in American men, aside from skin cancer, and the second leading cause of cancer death. 

This new technology is available through the combined efforts of the OU College of Medicine’s Departments of Radiology and Urology as well as the Stephenson Cancer Center. For more information on this new tool or to make an appointment, please call the Prostate and Urologic Cancers Clinic at (405) 271-4088. 

For media inquiries, please contact Claire Turmelle in the Marketing and Communications office at (405) 271-1333. 

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