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Eur Urol. 2012 Jan;61(1):177-84. doi: 10.1016/j.eururo.2011.08.042. Epub 2011 Aug 27.

Prospective assessment of prostate cancer aggressiveness using 3-T diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging-guided biopsies versus a systematic 10-core transrectal ultrasound prostate biopsy cohort.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.



Accurate pretreatment assessment of prostate cancer (PCa) aggressiveness is important in decision making. Gleason grade is a critical predictor of the aggressiveness of PCa. Transrectal ultrasound-guided biopsies (TRUSBxs) show substantial undergrading of Gleason grades found after radical prostatectomy (RP). Diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been shown to be a biomarker of tumour aggressiveness.


To improve pretreatment assessment of PCa aggressiveness, this study prospectively evaluated MRI-guided prostate biopsies (MR-GBs) of abnormalities determined on diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) maps. The results were compared with a 10-core TRUSBx cohort. RP findings served as the gold standard.


A 10-core TRUSBx (n=64) or MR-GB (n=34) was used for PCa diagnosis before RP in 98 patients.


Using multiparametric 3-T MRI: T2-weighted, dynamic contrast-enhanced imaging, and DWI were performed to identify tumour-suspicious regions in patients with a negative TRUSBx. The regions with the highest restriction on ADC maps within the suspicions regions were used to direct MR-GB. A 10-core TRUSBx was used in a matched cohort. Following RP, the highest Gleason grades (HGGs) in biopsies and RP specimens were identified. Biopsy and RP Gleason grade results were evaluated using chi-square analysis.


No significant differences on RP were observed for proportions of patients having a HGG of 3 (35% vs 28%; p=0.50), 4 (32% vs 41%; p=0.51), and 5 (32% vs 31%; p=0.61) for the MR-GB and TRUSBx cohort, respectively. MR-GB showed an exact performance with RP for overall HGG: 88% (30 of 34); for TRUS-GB it was 55% (35 of 64; p=0.001). In the MR-GB cohort, an exact performance with HGG 3 was 100% (12 of 12); for HGG 4, 91% (10 of 11); and for HGG 5, 73% (8 of 11). The corresponding performance rates for TRUSBx were 94% (17 of 18; p=0.41), 46% (12 of 26; p=0.02), and 30% (6 of 20; p=0.01), respectively.


This study shows prospectively that DWI-directed MR-GBs significantly improve pretreatment risk stratification by obtaining biopsies that are representative of true Gleason grade.

Copyright © 2011 European Association of Urology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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