Objective: To prospectively examine the accuracy of fine needle aspiration (FNA) for the detection of prostate cancer. Ultrasound-guided core needle biopsy of the prostate was used as the standard to which the FNA results were compared.
Patients and methods: One-hundred patients who had been referred for urological evaluation were suspected of having prostate cancer on the basis of digital rectal examination (DRE) and/or transrectal ultrasound (TRUS). All were further evaluated by digitally guided transrectal FNA and by TRUS-guided transperineal core needle biopsy.
Results: Prostate cancer was identified in 54 patients by core needle biopsy and in 45 by FNA. The sensitivity of FNA was 81% and both specificity and positive predictive value were 98%.
Conclusion: FNA is easily performed, has negligible morbidity and offers prompt results. These data suggest that FNA is a reasonable initial diagnostic procedure for the detection of prostate cancer. Core needle biopsy may be reserved for patients with negative cytology who are clinically suspected of having prostate cancer. In selected patients, FNA may be used as an alternative to core needle biopsy for diagnosis, treatment planning and follow-up.