In a clinical trial involving 370 men, researchers from Imperial College London, University College London, and Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust discovered that a new type of ultrasound scan can accurately diagnose most prostate cancer cases. When compared to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, ultrasound scans missed only 4.3 percent more clinically important prostate cancer cases – cancer that should be treated rather than monitored.
MRI scans are both costly and time-consuming. The team believes that an ultrasound scan should be used as a first test in a community healthcare setting, as well as in low and middle-income countries where high-quality MRI scans are difficult to obtain.
They believe it could be used in conjunction with existing MRI scans to improve cancer detection. The study was published in the journal Lancet Oncology. As cancer waiting lists grow as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is an urgent need to develop more efficient and cost-effective tests for prostate cancer. Professor Hashim Ahmed, the study’s lead author and Chair of Urology at Imperial College London, Professor Hashim Ahmed, the study’s lead author and Chair of Urology at Imperial College London, stated: “In the United Kingdom, prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer.” One in every six men will be diagnosed with the disease at some point in their lives, and that number is expected to rise.
“One of the tests we use to diagnose prostate cancer is an MRI scan.” Although effective, these scans are costly, can take up to 40 minutes to complete and are not widely available. Furthermore, some patients, such as those with hip replacements or claustrophobia, are unable to undergo MRI scans. As cancer waiting lists grow as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is an urgent need to develop more efficient and cost-effective tests for prostate cancer.”This is the first study to demonstrate that a specific type of ultrasound scan can be used as a potential test to detect clinically significant cases of prostate cancer.” Although MRI scans are slightly better, they can detect most cases of prostate cancer with high accuracy.”
We believe that this test can be used in low and middle-income settings where access to expensive MRI equipment is limited and prostate cancer cases are increasing.
“Rates of prostate cancer With approximately 52,300 new cases diagnosed each year, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the UK. It occurs when cells in the prostate grow uncontrollably. Prostate cancer progresses slowly, and symptoms such as blood in the urine do not appear until the disease has progressed. Men over the age of 50 are more likely to be affected, as are men with a family history of the disease.
Black men are disproportionately affected by the disease, and prostate cancer deaths have now surpassed those from breast cancer. A special type of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan called a multi-parametric MRI (mpMRI) scan, which helps doctors see if there is any cancer inside the prostate and how quickly the cancer is likely to grow, is one of the main methods for diagnosing prostate cancer. However, the scan takes 40 minutes and costs between £350 and £450. Prostate cancer diagnosisThe new study looked at the use of a different type of imaging called multiparametric ultrasound (mpUSS), which examines the prostate using soundwaves.
To create images of the prostate, a probe called a transducer is used in the test. It is inserted into the rectum and emits sound waves that reverberate off organs and other structures. These are then used to create images of the organs. The doctor performing the test also employs extra-special types of ultrasound imaging that assess the stiffness of the tissue as well as the amount of blood supply it has. These techniques are known as elastography, doppler, and contrast enhancement with microbubbles. Cancers appear more clearly as they become denser and have a greater blood supply. At separate visits, the men received both mpUSS and mpMRI scans.
This was followed by biopsies for 257 patients who had a positive mpUSS or mpMRI test result, which involved using thin needles to take small samples of tissue from the prostate to examine under a microscope for cancer. The results of the tests were then compared by the team.
Cancer was found in 133 men, with 83 of them having clinically significant cancer. Individually, mpUSS detected 66 cases of clinically significant cancer versus 77 cases detected by mpMRI.Although mpUSS detected 4.3% fewer clinically significant prostate cancers than mpMRI, the researchers estimated that this method would result in 11.1% more patients being biopsied. This was due to the mpUSS occasionally detecting abnormal areas even when there was no cancer. The researchers believe that the test can be used as an alternative to mpMRI as the first test for patients at risk of prostate cancer, especially in cases where mpMRI is not possible.
Because both imaging tests missed clinically significant cancers detected by the other, using both would increase the detection of clinically significant prostate cancers when compared to using either test alone.