Intensifying the saturation biopsy technique for detecting prostate cancer after previous negative biopsies: a step in the wrong direction

BJU Int. 2008 Aug;102(4):459-62. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2008.07560.x. Epub 2008 Mar 5.


Objective: To report the results using an extensive saturation biopsy in men with negative prostate biopsies but in whom there is still a clinical suspicion for carcinoma.

Patients and methods: Between February 1999 and October 2004 we offered 40 patients (median age 63 years) an extensive saturation biopsy if there was clinical suspicion of prostate cancer after previous negative prostate biopsies. The median (range) number of cores taken was 64 (39-139) and was adjusted to the size of the prostate. All patients received general or spinal anaesthesia.

Results: Of the 40 patients, 18 (45%) had carcinoma in at least one core; 16 had a radical prostatectomy, which showed pT2a, pT2b, pT2c, pT3a and pT3b adenocarcinoma of the prostate in three, four, six, two and one patients, respectively. Brachytherapy and external radiation were the therapies of choice in the other patients. Sixteen patients had marked haematuria after the biopsy procedure.

Conclusion: There is no significant increase in the cancer detection rate in an extensive saturation-biopsy regimen compared to published series with fewer cores, but the morbidity increased.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology*
  • Adenocarcinoma / surgery
  • Aged
  • Biopsy, Needle / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Prostate / pathology*
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / blood
  • Prostatectomy / methods
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / surgery


  • Prostate-Specific Antigen