Specialized Care for Prostate Cancer Diagnosis 

At Piedmont Oncology, the first step in treating prostate cancer is establishing an accurate diagnosis through diagnostic imaging or biopsy. 

The symptoms of prostate cancer occur when the enlarging prostate gland produces pressure on the urinary tract. They include:

  • Difficulty stopping or starting urination

  • Painful urination

  • Frequent urination at night

  • Blood in the urine

  • Difficulty in getting an erection. 

Since some of these symptoms are much more likely due to benign enlargement of the prostate or urinary tract infection, it is important to discuss them with a doctor. 

Prostate cancer is often asymptomatic or without symptoms, and therefore a blood test called PSA is used to screen for the presence of this common tumor.


Prostate Imaging Expertise

  • Ultrasound 

    Ultrasound of the prostate uses high-frequency sound waves to produce an image of the prostate gland. These pictures can help to determine whether prostate cancer is present. Ultrasound is often recommended when the Prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, level is elevated, a nodule is detected on a rectal exam, or when worrisome urinary tract symptoms occur.
  •  MRI

    Magnetic resonance imaging uses magnetic fields to produce an image of the prostate. It is used to determine the extent of cancer in a patient with biopsy-proven prostate cancer. Patients with implanted devices (e.g., cardiac pacemakers) often cannot have an MRI study.

When prostate cancer is suspected, the next step is to perform multiple needle biopsies of the prostate using a small needle. The biopsy tissue is studied under the microscope by a pathologist to look for the presence of cancer.

An expert pathologist at Piedmont Oncology performs the analysis of the biopsy tissue. This analysis will show whether prostate cancer is present or not, and if present, an estimate of how aggressive the tumor might be. This information is critical before discussions of treatment.


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